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2-alarm Thornton apartment fire forces 44 to evacuate

Fire crews conclude their operations at the scene of a Thornton apartment fire that forced 44 evacuation on the morning of Jan. 30, 2013.

Fire crews conclude their operations at the scene of a Thornton apartment fire that forced 44 evacuation on the morning of Jan. 30, 2013.

THORNTON, Colo. — A fire that ripped through a Thornton apartment forced 44 residents into the bitter cold, but lucky, did not cause any serious injuries.

According to two residents at 9700 Welby Road who spoke with our Chris Jose, they started smelling smoke around 1:30 a.m. and began a mass exodus out of Building 10 on the grounds of the apartment complex.

“They had everyone come into the clubhouse just to keep us all warm,” Samatha Ramos said, mentioning the fact that residents were retreating into temperatures in the teens. “They said we can’t go back home until maybe tomorrow.”

Two alarms went out to Thornton Fire crews, and their operations containing the fire were complete by 4:30 a.m. Two residents were treated for smoke inhalation on the scene, but there were no other injuries.

“When you’re dealing with big structures, that’s a concern,” Thornton Fire Marshall Chad McCollum said. “And the weather is also a concern. It was so cold out here, things were freezing, everything was slippery. We definitely had our challenges.”

Investigators are still trying to determine the cause of the fire, but two residents told Jose they believe the fire started on a second floor deck.