Saturday apartment fire destroys 2 units
By ROBERT R. JONES III
An apartment fire ignited by a lightning strike during Saturday’s turbulent weather resulted in two of the eight dwellings being destroyed.
The apartment complex is located at Tournament Boulevard and Trevino Street in Berwick.
Berwick Fire Chief Allen “Noonie” Rink said his department never actually received a call on the fire, but he noticed the building was burning as he was returning from several other calls Saturday due to lightning.
The two units were destroyed from a combination of fire and water damage as firefighters doused the burning roof to extinguish the blaze.
No residents were injured during the fire. One Berwick firefighter was treated for heat exhaustion and later released after being examined at a local hospital.
“I was leaving another call, and I just rolled up on the apartment fire,” Rink said. “I saw smoke coming out of the roof as I happened to be passing by. We had five or six calls that afternoon from lightning striking houses and power lines — it was crazy.”
He said his department responded to the fire at 3:17 p.m. and was on the scene until 8:45 p.m.
Rink said four of his department trucks responded to the fire, which began in the attic of the structure.
Firefighters had to tear through the roof to fight the blaze because there was no roof access from the inside of the attic of the structure.
The Morgan City Fire Department was also called in because the Berwick Fire Department needed their ladder (aerial) truck.
In all, he said 24 Berwick Volunteer Fire Department personnel and five Morgan City firefighters responded to the blaze.
Rink said there was no dollar value placed on the damage to the structure owned by Thorguson Realty yet.
He said his department will remain on alert Monday and into the week due to the threat of continued adverse weather.
“We are expecting more today because of the weather,” Rink said. “We will be out and about town ready to respond.”