Wind-Whipped Fire Races Through Local Apartment Building

(Photo by Kristin Gordon)
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COPPERAS COVE (February 25, 2013)--Firefighters were battling a fast-moving fire Monday afternoon as flames fanned by gusty winds raced through a building at an apartment complex in Copperas Cove.

Fire units were sent at around 2:15 p.m. Monday to the complex at 313 Sunset Lane, on the city's west side, and the first units reported flames and smoke pouring from the top of the unoccupied two-story brick structure.

The smoke billowing from the building could be seen from miles away.

Within minutes the roof of the building had collapsed and firefighters were in a defensive posture trying to keep the flames from spreading.

A 30-mile-per-hour wind fanned the flames through the broken windows of the building and raised concerns that the flames could spread to other nearby buildings.

Firefighters were using an aerial truck to pour water on the flames from above.

A News 10 reporter at the scene said there were dozens of people watching as firefighters battled the blaze, although the heavy smoke made it difficult to see and breathe.

Information about whether anyone was injured wasn’t immediately available.

Residents of a neighboring building in the complex were evacuated because of the fire. As of 9:00 p.m., residents nearby were cleared to go back to their homes.

The wind is continuing to fan even the smallest smoldering embers, allowing spot fires to pop up. Fire officials say they will have a unit on scene all night to put out those hot spots.

(Photo by Kristin Gordon)