VESTAVIA HILLS, Ala. (WIAT) — At least 18 people who live at Kreekview Apartments in Vestavia Hills can’t go home tonight. Their building burned so quickly, most people didn’t know what was happening until firefighters knocked on their door.
Someone who lives at Kreekview Apartments invited us to stand on their porch to give you a good look at the damage.
Three people had to be rescued, one from a window. They were carried down. Two more had to be carried or helped out from the lower floor.
WIAT spoke with one woman firefighters had to help out, but she had to leave just about everything behind.
They sat on grass, or whatever chairs they could find, holding their children and trying to keep their pets calm.
They sat, and waited while firefighters poured water onto their homes, and smoke poured out.
The fire started earlier in the morning –
“We woke up to hearing a bunch of people screaming,” said Debra Walker. “And then the big bang comes on my door, ‘get out, get out.’”
Walker said her first thought was her two dogs.
“I looked at them, I said, ‘I have to get the little one, she’s blind.’ One of the police officers scooped her up,” said Walker. “They helped me get out, they saw me with my cane. They walked with me up the hill, all of them walked up with me.”
Once she and her two girls, as she calls them, were out safely, Walker said she then started to think about the things she had to leave behind.
“The second thought that came to my head was, ‘I should have gotten my pictures.’ My youngest child is getting married in August and I was looking through pictures. It’s funny what’s important, and the pictures are very important.”
Everyone in Walker’s building lost something, whether it was their belongings or memories, but they all did get out.
Walker said that it is thanks to the fire fighters and police officers who ran into the flames to save lives.
“They didn’t think about anything, they were just doing it, they just helped us that’s all they were concentrating on was ‘let’s get the people out safe,’ and they did,” said Walker.
The entire building is either damaged by the fire or by water, so no one can stay at the apartment complex as of now.
The Red Cross said they are helping some people with a place to stay, while the rest chose to stay with friends or family.
Copyright 2015 WIAT 42 News