Elderly residents evacuated after 5-alarm fire engulfs seniors’ residence

A 5-alarm fire at a Dallas seniors’ residence hospitalized two firefighters as they attempted to contain the blaze that prompted the evacuation of elderly residents from the building.

More than 100 firefighters were dispatched to fight the blaze that broke out in the east of the city on Thursday and forced residents to take refuge on the smoky sidewalk, according to local media. Although authorities have not released details of the fire, the injuries to the two firefighters are not life threatening and no other people were reported injured.

Dallas Fire-Rescue crews responded to the call at the Lakeland Hills Senior Living Facility after 6:30 p.m. local time, ABC affiliate WFAA reports. Firefighters arrived to see smoke billowing from the second floor of the three-story building. Crews upgraded it to a 2-alarm fire, then a 4-alarm fire and a 5-alarm fire at 8:20 p.m.

Video captured by the station shows crews helping elderly residents through heavy smoke from wheelchairs or walkers. In the background, a wall of twinkling lights from the many emergency vehicles on site.

Dallas Fire-Rescue responded Thursday to a 5-alarm fire at a seniors’ residence. Here, a Dallas Fire-Rescue truck is parked near tornado downed power lines in Dallas, Texas on October 21, 2019.
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Residents displaced by the fire have been taken to a Red Cross shelter or are with family members, the property manager told the station.

About 120 firefighters were still at work trying to put out the blaze two hours after it was first reported, Dallas Fire-Rescue spokesman Jason Evans said. The Dallas Morning News.

The building was evacuated and no residents reported injuries, Evans told the newspaper. The cause of the fire has not been determined, he said.

Both injured firefighters are expected to be fine, NBC affiliate KXAS-TV reports. The American Red Cross has set up a temporary evacuation center and is working with facility management to help residents find housing, according to the station.

At least 10 ambulances have been dispatched to the scene and the city’s Office of Emergency Management is seeking permanent placement for residents, according to KXAS-TV.

Lakeland Hills Senior Living Facility describes itself on its website as an “affordable and stylish” seniors’ residence for seniors 55 and older.

It is currently unclear whether the fire has been extinguished or how many residents have been displaced.

Earlier this month, Dallas and Fort Worth were hit by heavy rain and hail during thunderstorms that knocked out power to nearly 20,000 homes. During the storm, Dallas County and other areas were subject to tornado advisories. Last month, a helicopter crashed into the ground in the Dallas area, killing its pilot and passenger.

Newsweek has contacted Dallas Fire-Rescue and Lakeland Hills Senior Living Facility for comment.


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