1 child dead, 3 critically injured in Kansas City, KS apartment - KCTV5 News

1 child dead, 3 critically injured in Kansas City, KS apartment fire

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Officials say a child is dead and at least three other people are critically injured after an apartment fire.

The fire broke out about 10:45 a.m. at the College Park Townhomes in the 700 block of North 70th Terrace.

Firefighters received reports that people were trapped on the second floor, so they had search and rescue efforts in place while fighting the fire. Firefighters did have to pull missing children to safety. 

According to the KCFD, a total of four civilians were taken to the hospital. 

The authorities initially told KCTV5 News that one adult and one child had died from their injuries. However, the KCFD later corrected that statement and said only the child had died.

One of the three individuals who is still alive is a child. An adult was still in the burn unit as of Saturday evening.

Two firefighters sustained minor injuries. 

More than 20 people were displaced because of the fire and are receiving assistance from the Red Cross. 

"We'll give them assistance for their immediate needs, taking care of them through the weekend," said Scott Riggs with the Red Cross.

The fire was a two-alarm fire, as additional firefighters and EMS units were requested. Ultimately, more than 40 firefighters went to the scene.

The fire caused about $500,000 worth of property damage. The fire marshal said it is likely a total loss. 

One person was taken into custody by the authorities after the fire. 

The cause of the fire at the "eight-plex" building is currently unknown and the investigation is ongoing. A dog was to be brought in to sniff for accelerants. 

A resident who has lived at the complex for 22 years said that he heard two loud "booms" and then noticed the apartment complex was on fire.

He said the flames spread quickly as he and his neighbors ran to safety. 

"I had enough time to get on my shoes, but the house was filled with smoke at that point," said Carlos Shumpert. "Our neighbors were jumping out the windows because the fire was so big in their household."

"You can't even see my unit because of the smoke right now," he said.

"Just looking at it, it looks like another start over at this point," Shumpert said. "I'm just praying that once they get that contained and out, we can get something we can salvage. I feel blessed at this point. I also feel devastated because I'm looking at the remains of what we had."

He said people were trying to escape the fire through their windows.

The building did not have a sprinkler system, according to the fire marshal. According to a report from the KCFD, it did have smoke detectors, however. 

Volunteers brought ice water for the families displaced by the fire and kept them in the shade. 

A nearby church group also came by to check on them. 

"When we heard about the fire, we wanted to see how to assist them," said Stella Alejos with The Cure Church. "Popsicles, because we didn't know whether they'd have something cold. Some of them are off without electricity."

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