COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) – Fire crews fought a large apartment fire Thursday afternoon in northeast Columbus and it is now being investigated as an arson.
A portion of Whisperwood Apartments at 6029 Flat Rock Road was engulfed in flames. The fire happened around 1:25 p.m. ET in the attic area of one apartment building.
According to Fire Marshal Ricky Shores, this fire was intentionally set and is being investigated as an arson.
Police are looking for two black males who are persons of interest. They were seen coming out of the complex just before the fire started.
Police believe the two males are juveniles between the ages of 14-16 and were wearing blue hoodies, carrying lighter fluid.
Shores also says that 8 units were affected by the fire and a total of 15-20 people are displaced. The units affected were 12-75 through 18-82.
No residents were injured, but one fireman was hurt and has been taken to the hospital.
The temperatures inside the units while officials were battling the flames were estimated to reach 500 degrees. As protocol, multiple stations responded to the scene, allowing firefighters to rotate in order to stay safe.
Sonja Faine, who lives in a unit directly next to the apartments on fire says her daughter witnessed the flames as soon as they started, her daughter called 911.
"She said there were flames, and as a matter of fact they were moving so fast she was worried they were going to affect our apartment," Faine said.
Whisperwood residents describe the scary moments right after the fire began.
"I was just coming outside. My brothers came to get me because I was in the top room closest to the fire, so that's when my brothers came to get me, said Kamden Walker.
"And that's when it started to spread. We went down stairs and asked them to call 911," said Kyniah Ingersoll.
The American Red Cross is moving residents.
WTVM TEAM COVERAGE: Click here to learn more about how the American Red Cross is helping residents.
Watch this Facebook video as Columbus Fire Marshal Ricky Shores gave an update on the fire investigation.
Watch this Facebook video from the scene as crews were battling the fire.