Apartment Fire

About ten people are out of their homes Monday night after an apartment fire in Nacogdoches. Fortunately, no one who lives at the complex was hurt.

The fire broke out around noon at the Austin Arms Apartments, located at Durst Street and Douglass Highway.

The blaze began in an apartment on the first floor, but quickly spread throughout the west unit.

Fire Investigator Del Birdwell said, "The flames spread pretty fast. We had some spreading up to the second floor, up into the attic area. Total of 5 fire units responded to the scene. Also had off-duty personnel called in, as well as off-duty chiefs."

Birdwell says the blaze began in the back part of the apartment, but the cause is still under investigation.

The apartment's occupant, Bobbie Steadham, blames the fire on a faulty wire in the closet. "It had been sparking coming from my house and popping, and they was (were) told."

Apartment manager Linda Smith says she was unaware of that problem, but knew that maintenance crews had worked on the air conditioner not long ago.

Austin Arms is an older complex that has had several building fires. Smith says the fire marshal has ordered her to close the west wing until all of the units are checked out.