Residents of a north Minneapolis apartment building are without a place to live after an early Wednesday fire.
Fire crews arrived at the scene about 12:25 a.m. to find heavy smoke pouring from the third floor of the building. They later found and extinguished the blaze, which started in a first-floor laundry room, said Minneapolis Fire Department Assistant Chief Melanie Rucker.
Some of the residents of the building in the 3500 block of Penn Avenue N. remained on scene after daybreak, anxious about what the future holds.
Denise Meanweather, 63, has lived in the apartment building for several years. She stayed back with her grandson, 3, and her husband, Floyd Boyd, to make sure no one ransacked her first-floor apartment.
She said she still hadn't seen or heard from the landlord some 10 hours after the fire was first reported, and was worried about her property and family.
The building owner, listed as GS NMinn Holdings LLC in Minnesota Secretary of State business filings, had not returned requests for comment as of Tuesday afternoon.
Firefighters searched all three floors and helped an adult and child to safety. They were evaluated by paramedics for possible smoke inhalation. Another adult in the building was treated for heart-related issues. No other injuries were reported, Rucker said.
Zelma Powell, 70, said she was sleeping when the fire broke out.
"They had to get me up out of there," Powell said while surveying the damage. "I almost died up in here."
Around 10 a.m., someone picked her up and took her to the Red Cross for support.
The Penn Avenue building was deemed uninhabitable due to the fire, heavy smoke and water damage, Rucker said.
The Red Cross is providing assistance to the 20 residents who lived in the building. They might be put up temporarily at a hotel while more permanent housing is found.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.