KALIHI, Hawaii –
A five-unit apartment complex in Nu’uanu went up in flames Wednesday morning. Because of the fire, the building is not livable.
Everyone made it out, except for one dog that died.
Firefighters said a mother and baby were the only ones in the building when the fire started Wednesday morning.
The top floor suffered severe fire damage and the bottom floor is flooded with water.
Fire investigators don’t have an official cause, but they say it likely started on the top floor.
But firefighters say they are happy the fire didn’t spread to other buildings or to the Hongwanji Mission school one block away.
Nearby residents say it was a scary thing to see.
“I smelled the smoke and came right outside my front door, right on the balcony and saw this entire building engulfed in flames. I mean flames were coming up right out of the top. It was huge and I knew that building was made of wood so the fire started suddenly and spread suddenly,” Caroline Skinner, neighbor said.
Fire Captain Scot Seguirant say there is no working smoke detectors in the building. Most neighbors were alerted to the fire by the smell of smoke.
He emphasized just how important it is for everyone to make sure they have one in their home.
“Every home can have their own smoke detector. I know I’ve installed mine in my own home, they’re relatively inexpensive and they save lives,” Seguirant said.
Witnesses say, the fire burned so rapidly that the mother who was inside only had time to grab her child, pets and one backpack before fleeing.
Red cross is providing assistance and hotel rooms for people who are displaced.