A candle left unattended in a bathroom is blamed for a fire that swept through a 15-unit apartment building in Cedar Rapids early Sunday. Lisa Gordon and her daughter Rebekka were among the 20 people who were awakened around 2 a.m. and escaped without injury.
“I’ve heard about unattended candles. You hear about fires like that every once in a while…that was kind of scary,” Gordon said. No one was seriously hurt in the fire at Glenbrook West Apartments, though two people were treated at the scene for smoke inhalation. Cedar Rapids Fire Department spokesperson Greg Buelow said the building underwent a smoke alarm system check within the last two weeks and that measure saved lives.
“Everybody believes smoke and fire is going to wake you up and that is not the case. That smoke alarm is a lifesaver. It’s going to alert you out of your sleep and gives you those moments to get out safely,” Buelow said. Several residents of the apartment building are receiving temporary housing help from the American Red Cross.
By Nadia Crow, KCRG-TV, Cedar Rapids