18 units destroyed in apartment fire in Kissimmee

Building to be torn down at Blossom Park Villas

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - After a fire destroyed 18 apartment units in Kissimmee Monday afternoon, residents returned to the building that's now been condemned by inspectors.

More than 100 firefighters responded to the fire at Blossom Park Villas near a shopping center in the 3000 block of Parkway Boulevard in Kissimmee.

Investigators said flames were shooting from the third floor when crews arrived. 

No injuries were reported.

Witnesses said the fire spread quickly.

"It started down there, (and) when I came home we smelled the smoke in the breezeway," Gygi Williamson said.

Fire officials said the building will be torn down due to the damage.

"My memories are gone," Williamson said.

On Tuesday, firefighters helped some families recover belongings and pets from inside units that weren't severely damaged.

For Aaron Lucas and his family, there wasn't anything to recover.  Their third floor apartment was charred beyond recognition.

"I lost everything. It's a lot of investments and it's devastating to see this," Lucas said.

Lucas' girlfriend and infant son were sleeping at home when the fire broke out.

"She got out as fast as possible and left her phone, keys and everything inside," Lucas said.  "It was just a split second that she could get out and get my son out."

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

The Red Cross is assisting families affected by the fire.

Blossom Park Villas condo association issed a statement to residents.

"Dear Members of the Blossom Park Villas Condominium Association," the posting read. "We had a fire in building 3024, the cause is currently being determined, meanwhile it is important to keep people away from the site since the entire building is condemned – no entry is allowed until further notice due to multiple hazards. 

"We are working on fencing of the building to prevent possible injuries or vandalism, there is a high chance that the building will collapse – again, no one is allowed and nothing can be taken out, the association is instructed to call the police if anyone is sighted in the restricted area, please call the police if you spot anyone entering the building.

"The assistance to the victims of the fire is provided by Red Cross, the contact number is 407-803-6149

"The homeowners are still responsible for the assessments and mortgages.

"If tenants have renters insurance they should contact their agencies. If owners have insurance they should contact their agents. The association filed an insurance claim, we are working with the adjuster to understand the extent of the coverage.

"The office will post updates on blossomparkvillas.com and a Facebook page as soon as we have more information."
 

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