Saturday, October 10, 2009

Woman trapped because of hoarding escapes apartment blaze

By Tracy Manzer

LONG BEACH - A woman trapped inside a burning apartment because of excessive hoarding conditions was able to escape injury early Thursday by crawling through a bathroom window, fire officials said.

Residents in the 500 block of Cherry Avenue awoke to choking smoke billowing from the burning apartment shortly before 7:30 a.m., said Long Beach Fire Department Battalion Chief Jackawa Jackson.

The fire began in the first floor unit, which was filled with trash and other combustible items. Many of the rooms had various odds and ends stacked more than halfway to the ceiling, Jackson said.

Because of the clutter and because the fire was burning between the woman and her front door she remained trapped inside for several minutes..." More