Families displaced after 2-alarm fire at Columbia apartment buil - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Families displaced after 2-alarm fire at Columbia apartment building

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A massive apartment fire in Columbia, Md., sent two people to the hospital and left as many as 16 families without a home Friday afternoon.

The three-story apartment building on Little Patuxent Parkway was gutted.

“When I went out to the living room, I saw my living room was filled with smoke and black smoke was actually coming underneath my door,” said Kim Pruim.

Pruim didn't make it out her front door. She went over her balcony and climbed down.

The front of her apartment building looks as if it might have been spared with only some damage that is evident. But a look at the back side shows much of it is a total loss.

Initial reports from fire officials indicated a mother and child were trapped, but we later learned both managed to make their way out of the burning building.

Maria Jones’ building wasn't affected, but she had a front row seat to the frightening scene. Her son helped rescue the mother and child.

“I think he stepped on the air conditioner unit and was able to grab the baby and pass it to the policeman and pass it to me, and then my girlfriend was able to climb out,” she said.

As many as 16 families couldn't return home and many lost everything.

The Red Cross has set up a shelter for the displaced residents. Fire officials say between the Red Cross and the apartment complex, everyone will have somewhere to go.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

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