Families Recall Harrowing Escapes From Burning NW OKC Apartment - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |

Families Recall Harrowing Escapes From Burning NW OKC Apartment

Posted: Updated:
Residents at the Tuscany Village Apartments on the Northwest side of the city had to jump from windows and balconies to escape the fire. Residents at the Tuscany Village Apartments on the Northwest side of the city had to jump from windows and balconies to escape the fire.
OKLAHOMA CITY -

A three-alarm fire at an Oklahoma City apartment complex during the morning has left several families looking for a place to stay Saturday night.

Residents at the Tuscany Village Apartments on the Northwest side of the city actually had to jump from windows and balconies to escape the fire. Firefighters said they got the call around 11:40 a.m. When they arrived at the scene, several units were already burning.

Resident Robert Lee Johnson, Jr. said he only had seconds to get out of his apartment after the smoke detector woke him up.

"Smoke was in there so quick and the fire was right at the door and the first I thought was ‘Just jump out the balcony,'" he said.

Johnson's girlfriend, Denise Singleton, was paying their rent when the building caught on fire and she rushed back to the unit, which she said was completely engulfed.

"I was running and crying just running and crying. I couldn't find him, you know, but he called and said that he had jumped. He jumped!" she recalled.

7/7/12 Related Story: 3-Alarm Fire Extinguished At NW OKC Apartment Complex

Johnson made the decision to jump from his second-story balcony to safety, but he was not the only person who jumped for his life as the fire quickly spread from one apartment to the next.

"A neighbor, she ran and um, she knocked on all the doors and told those children to get out so the children were jumping through the window and they were catching them," said Singleton.

A 10-year-old was trapped inside his unit. Onlookers said the boy froze at a window in fear, as they pleaded with him to jump out.

"He was just so scared and that's why I just looked at him right in his eyes and said, ‘Baby you gotta jump,' and so he did," said Shelby King.

The boy finally got the courage to jump out and landed in King's arms.

The fire destroyed virtually everything the three affected families had inside, but they count their blessings knowing everyone made it out safely.

"We continue to pray. We thank god because you know, Robert is safe today. It could have been something else. What if he had not woken up," said Singleton.

There was no official word on what sparked the fire on Saturday, but residents thought it was electrical. They said work was recently done to fix the lighting in their breezeway. That was where they said the heaviest flames were.

Oklahoma City Fire Deputy Chief Marc Woodard said close to 50 firefighters battled the fire in the hot weather. He said it was their hard work that kept the fire from spreading throughout the complex.

The American Red Cross was on hand to assist the families that lost their apartments in the fire. 

Special Features

iPhone App

Get breaking news, weather, sports & video directly on your iPhone.

Politics

Breaking political news & the latest headlines from the state capitol & D.C.

Radars

See where weather is happening using our live interactive radars.

Technology

Spend your money wisely with reviews of new tech gadgets & the latest news in technology.

TV Schedule

Need to know what's on TV? Check out our television schedule.

Live Radar

WARN Interactive
Powered by Frankly
News 9
7401 N. Kelley Ave.
Oklahoma City, OK 73111
News9.com is proud to provide Oklahomans with timely and relevant news and information, sharing the stories, pictures and loves of Oklahomans across our great state.
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 KWTV. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.