A Thursday morning fire at the Ashton Ridge Apartments completely gutted one apartment and caused extensive damage to several adjacent units.
The blaze at 2522 Callier Springs Road broke out around 5:30 a.m.
Firefighters on the scene said a couple of people were transported by Floyd Medical Center EMS for treatment of smoke inhalation, otherwise there were no critical injuries resulting from the fire.
“Obviously the priority was to get all of the residents out, and they did an excellent job of that,” said Capt. Kelly Stokes with the Rome-Floyd Fire Department.
Firefighters went up the breezeways on the opposite ends of the fire to knock the flames down.
Battalion Chief Milton Wilson said firefighters evacuated all residents of the apartment complex’s 400 Building.
“We’ve got a little bit of suspicion that it may have been a grease fire,” Wilson said. “Until the fire marshal confirms that, we can’t say for sure.”
Betty Orr, who lived below the apartment where the fire erupted, said she had no idea what happened. Her apartment sustained fire and water damage.
Austin Prince, who lived on the ground floor next to Orr, said his first thought was that kids had pulled the alarm.
“I looked out on the balcony, and there was a bunch of flames leaping out the side of the building so we tried to get out in a hurry and grab everything we could as soon as possible,” Prince said.
Prince saluted firefighters for knocking down the flames quickly and said his apartment only suffered water damage.
A representative for Ambling Management, which owns the complex, could not be reached for comment Thursday.
The Northwest Georgia Red Cross opened a temporary shelter at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1941 Shorter Ave.
Six people displaced by the fire were being sheltered there late Thursday afternoon, said Jeffery Putnam, executive director of the Northwest Georgia chapter of the American Red Cross. They were expected to stay the night, Putnam said.
The other victims were able to stay with friends and family, Putnam said. Another fire occurred at Ashton Ridge in July 2005. Forty residents were displaced when a fire destroyed 18 units.
A similar fire occurred 2005 at the apartment complex. Click here to read "Origin - but not cause - of fire found" and "Fire guts apartment".