JACKSONVILLE, ONSLOW COUNTY - The Red Cross announced they are assisting 17 people who have been displaced by an apartment fire in Jacksonville Tuesday afternoon.
The fire happened at the Azalea Garden Apartments at 902 Gum Branch Rd. early Tuesday afternoon. Flames were seen coming out of the roof of a building located in the back of the complex.
"Firefighters found the fire at the structure heavily involved upon arrival. The residential dwellings were evacuated immediately," said Deputy Chief of Fire Operations Spencer Lee.
One woman said her next door neighbor's apartment may be where the fire started. A woman and a baby live there.
"She knocked on my door, and when she knocked on my door, there was smoke," the woman said. "She was running tryin to get everybody out. So she gave me her baby, you know... her baby just came out of the tub, and the fire started spreading."
Officials said seven of the 20 apartment units in the building were damaged, three by fire and four by water damage.
To provide immediate lodging for the affected families, Red Cross officials have opened an emergency shelter at the Living Hope Community Church at 1310 Hargett Street in Jacksonville.
In addition, Red Cross volunteers will make sure the affected families have access food, clothing, supplies and other resources. If interested in helping, you may contact the Red Cross at (910) 347-3581.
No injuries were reported.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.