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More than 40 people displaced after apartment fire in Milwaukee

NOW: More than 40 people displaced after apartment fire in Milwaukee

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- More than 50 people were forced out of their homes after an apartment fire in Milwaukee Monday night, May 4. 

Milwaukee firefighters were called to an apartment near 35th and villard around 3:30 p.m. Monday. 

Officials say the fire started in the basement and residents had to be assisted out of the building. 

A child and adult were treated at the scene for smoke inhalation, but were not taken to the hospital. 

The American Red Cross says 42 residents are staying in a hotel and they are helping them with buying essential items. 

An American Red Cross spokesperson said they are seeing more fires than normal during this time of year, and he thinks it's because more people are staying at home due to the "Safer at Home" order. 

One resident described how he found out there was a fire in his building. 

"I got a phone call. When I found out I rushed and by that time it was all locked down, everybody was standing outside. You know couldn’t get into the building. Finally, when the fire department left they allowed everyone go in and get what they could get out of there,” Barry Beverly said. 

Justin Kern of the American Red Cross said, the way they assist people after a fire has changed because of COVID-19. 

"In this kind of situation we would ordinarily open up a shelter, maybe at a gymnasium or a church, but given the health considerations COVID-19 environment really that hotel shelter is the way,” Kern said. 

The cause of the fire remains under investigation. 


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