Two people driving by jumped out of their car and raced from door to door when they spotted a fire at the Stratford House Inns early Wednesday morning.
The fire started around 2 a.m. near E. 30th Street and S. Broadway. A man and his friend were driving by the motel when they saw the flames. They knocked on doors and warned people about the fire.
About 25 guests were inside the motel. One man said he was taking a shower when he was told to get out because the building was on fire. Everyone escaped unharmed.
Firefighters rushed to the scene, but the fire was so intense they had to attack it from outside the structure. It took them several hours to extinguish the fire.
The fire destroyed the roof of the motel and caused heavy damage to the interior. Fire crews say lightning may have started the fire, but they're still investigating and don't have an official cause yet.