Fire chiefs: 'excellent response' to apartment blaze - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Fire chiefs: 'excellent response' to apartment blaze

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The fire started late Saturday night at the Hunters Ridge Apartments. (Source: Huntsville Fire & Rescue) The fire started late Saturday night at the Hunters Ridge Apartments. (Source: Huntsville Fire & Rescue)
The Carlyon family's unit was one of several that suffered damage by smoke and water. The Carlyon family's unit was one of several that suffered damage by smoke and water.
HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

One person was taken to the hospital following a fire at a Huntsville apartment complex.

Firefighters responded late Saturday night to the Hunters Ridge Apartments. Authorities said heavy fire was seen coming from a second story apartment and breezeway.

Power was cut to the building while firefighters worked to control the fire. One apartment unit was heavily damaged in the fire, and all four upstairs apartments had smoke in them. One person was taken to the hospital with unknown injuries.

Next door to the unit that burned, the Carlyon family spent Easter Sunday picking up the pieces of the place they called home instead of painting and hunting for eggs. Melissa Carlyon said she was up late cleaning up from having family over for the holiday. She remembered hearing a loud noise outside that got her attention.

"I immediately ran out the door and I heard [a woman] banging on the doors downstairs - "Everyone, get out!" - and that's when I saw all the fire," said Melissa. "I immediately ran back in and I said, "Mom, we gotta go! We gotta get out! There's an apartment on fire; this place is burning up.'"

"I had a shoe in my hand. One shoe," said Sandy Carlyon. "I just had my nightshirt on. I didn't have time to grab my keys or my wallet or anything."

Running to safety was no easy task, she said. The family had to run through the blaze to get to safety.

"Everything happened so fast, I remember I was scared to run out because of all the flames, and the heat was so massive. It was really scary," she said.

Melissa said no one in her family was injured, and for that, they all had reason to celebrate Sunday, and the morning's events left them with a valuable lesson.

"As a family, we definitely hope to cherish each other more," she said.

The American Red Cross has put the Carlyon family in a hotel for a few days. The family is setting up a Facebook page so people can contact them regarding assistance. They said they aren't sure what is next, but they are happy they didn't lose anything they can't live without.

District Chiefs Talley Fanning and Steve Oliver released a statement after the fire Sunday morning which said, "If not for the excellent response and actions of the fire crews on the scene, the fire could have caused a lot more damage."

Authorities said the cause of the fire is under investigation.

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    Sunday, April 20 2014 9:54 PM EDT2014-04-21 01:54:04 GMT
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