The Nashville Fire Department (NFD) said 350 units were displaced after a fire broke out at a downtown apartment complex on Sunday morning.
NFD said a kitchen fire started on the 27th floor of the 505 apartment complex. The sprinkler in the unit put the fire out, however, the water caused the unit to flood and created another electrical fire.
“A resident had placed a wicker basket on a stove that had burned, and their sprinkling system did activate so that fire was technically out upon arrival of our crews, but that water had begun to flow throughout that unit and the floor, because of the sprinkler activation,” Kendra Loney with NFD said.
Firefighters said the water poured into an electrical room and sparked another fire on the 24th floor.
“There were multiple fires that started throughout the building, and they had to be put out, the sprinkler system did what it was set to do, but water and electricity just don’t work,” Loney said.
NFD said 528 units were evacuated. the unit the fire started in is significantly damaged and several units have water damage.
“Honestly we thought it was like one of those drills,” said Eya Dufresne, a 505 resident. “I woke up to the fire department knocking on our door and saying you have to be evacuated. We had like what felt like minutes to be out.”
Dufresne and her boyfriend Chris Clark had to rush out of their 26th-floor apartment at 505 Church Street.
“We had 52 flights of stairs to go down and we had to bring our 40-pound dog down,” Clark said.
Even though Clark and Dufresne brought their dog down, they had one other worry.
“I’m a little nervous, we brought our dog down, but we left our cat,” Dufresne said.
While firefighters worked to make sure that some of the units were safe to re-enter, Dufresne prayed for her cat, Pluto.
“Things could come and go, but as long as Pluto is okay, we’ll be fine,” Dufresne said.
NFD said no one in the building was hurt. People living on floors 30 through 45 were able to go back inside, but those living on floors 3 through 29 were not let back inside and NFD said it could be a couple of days before they can return.
NFD added that floors 3 through 29 will remain without power and that the building remains on a fire watch.