COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) – More than 50 people are without a place to live Monday after a huge apartment fire destroyed nearly two dozen units in North Columbus overnight.
The Lullwater Apartments on the 8400 block of Veterans Pkwy. caught fire around 1 a.m. No injuries have been reported, but according to Columbus police, one of the buildings in the complex is a total loss.
Fire Marshal Rickey Shores says the cause is still under investigation, and that everyone is accounted for except one person, who they are trying to locate.
Brigitte Hurtado said she was able to get out of her apartment with a few items just in time.
"Yeah I was in shock, but you know, I just had to stay positive and thinking that something good has to come out of this. I'm very grateful that mom, dad our dogs are safe," Hurtado said.
Columbus Police and Columbus Fire Department are working to determine the cause of a fire that destroyed an apartment building in Columbus. The American Red Cross was on the scene to help displaced families with basic needs and essentials.
The Lullwater Apartments are also asking for donations for residents, in a Facebook post Monday morning.
According to the fire battalion chief, there is not value estimation of damage loss to report yet.
The Red Cross says it has assisted 48 individuals with $6,000 total. The money is distributed on client assistance cards and the allowances are based on family sizes, for example, a family of four it would receive $500.
The funds can be uses however the victims see fit, to purchase clothes, hotel room, food, etc.
The Red Cross also fed the families breakfast and coffee this morning and issued comfort kits including toothpaste toothbrushes and other necessities at the Lullwater rental office.
The office staff is collecting new items such as gift cards, diapers and school supplies. There were a bunch of children who lost everything.
Ashley Furniture is also donating free mattresses to the victims. Publix has donated food for them as well.
The public can make donations by going to RedCross.org, on that site they can designate their money to stay in Columbus. Call 1-800 RedCross, local number is (706)-323-5614.
Stay with News Leader 9 on air and online as we get more information on this developing story.