Clark County Fire urged residents to turn in unused fireworks. (Joe Lybarger/FOX5)
Courtesy of Bridget Seering
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -
Investigators continued to probe the cause of a massive three-alarm fire that left as many as 46 people without home in east Las Vegas.
In a news conference Friday, Clark County Fire officials said if the cause of a blaze on Thursday in the 1700 block of Karen Avenue was indeed caused by fireworks, it will have been the worst fire sparked by fireworks in the department's history.
In response, CCFD urged southern Nevadans who still had unused fireworks to dispense them at two locations in Clark County.
One location is Fire Station 18 at 575 E. Flamingo Road, east of Paradise Road. The other station is Fire Station 76 at 50 E. Laughlin Circle Drive in Laughlin.
The blaze burned for several hours Thursday, and smoke could be seen for miles. Twenty-two units at the Sonoma Shadow apartment complex were destroyed. Two buildings burned. All of the tenants made it out alive but not all escaped injury.
"I saw one lady over here crying. It looked like she came from over there, got in a car and left," said witness Bryan Kelley.
Witnesses gathered on blocked-off streets, watching flames erupt into the night sky. Fire crews arrived at the apartment complex at around 6:45 p.m.
"When you start talking about apartment complexes, you've got multiple stories. You have the possibility of roofs and attics. The fire can spread through those," said Girard Page with Clark County Fire Department.
Christine Bailey lives in the next building over from where the fire broke out. She rushed home to make sure her hearing impaired mother made it out. She did.
"I saw the whole top start blowing up," Bailey said. "I ran over here as fast as I could because I was worried about her."
Four people suffered injuries, including two women who were taken to local hospitals for second-degree burns. A firefighter was among the injured and was taken to a hospital as well.
Investigators haven't yet determined how the fire started. The damage is estimated at $1.5 million. At least 46 people have been displaced. The Red Cross is aiding those displaced.
Copyright 2012 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
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