WEST ASHLEY, SC – Monday evening a fire broke out at a 12-story apartment complex in downtown Charleston and since then 151 people have had to find somewhere else to stay.
Tonight, the American Red Cross opened a disaster recovery shelter opened in West Ashley.
Tuesday night News 2 spoke with Liberty Smith, who lives on the 10th floor of the building. Smith told News 2, “The fire alarm started flashing and then she (her mother) opened the door and she saw it was just a bunch of smoke.”
Smith said she and her mom had to run down 10 flights of stairs to get to safety. “It was like really smoky and there was like smoke coming out from under his door. It was really crazy!”
Fire officials say the fire started from a sofa inside an apartment on the 10th floor.
While the fire was contained inside that room, and only one tenant was treated for smoke inhalation, water damage from the sprinkler systems damaged several other floors.
Tuesday evening crews were working to air out the building to get residents back inside.
Kathleen Stough has lived in the building for 14 years and was one of 93 people who were initially sent to stay at the Marriott hotel downtown, but that was only for Monday night.
Tuesday night, the American Red Cross set up a disaster shelter at Grace on the Ashley Baptist Church. Stough explained, “My dog would like to see her home again and everybody else would like to see their homes again and get things back in order.”
After talking with some of the people who had been working inside the apartment building, some said they hope to have the residents back in their apartments by Friday.
Tonight we reached out to the CEO of the Joseph Floyd Manor building for an update on the apartment complex’s condition and for a definitive answer as to when residents will be able to get back inside, so far we have not heard back.