Age, Outdated Design Contributed To Damage In South Tulsa Apartment Fire

Monday, August 13th 2012, 10:06 pm
By: News On 6

A child's curiosity left 22 families without a home Monday morning.

The building that burned at Fairmont Terrace Apartments in south Tulsa is nearly 50 years old. That means when it was built, sprinklers were not required in apartments.

And the firewall was built to sustain heat for half as long as apartments are required to do now.

The fire started in an apartment on the first level and quickly spread up and through the attic and roof.

"It was 40 feet tall out the roof and then the roof fell in, and a big explosion a minute ago," said witness Michael Hoover.

8/13/12 Related Story: South Tulsa Apartment Fire Started By Child Playing With Lighter

Tulsa Fire said the blaze was started by a child playing with a lighter.

At this time, officials are not releasing the child's age.

The fire devoured 12 apartments then went through the firewall causing damage on the other side as well.

"Back then, they were required to have an hour and a half fire wall, which is what they have in there, and it lasted about an hour and a half before we had any fire get through to the other side of the attic," TFD Chief Stan May said.

Two hours after the fire started crews were still working to put out hot spots.

Four people were taken to the hospital with injuries, including two firefighters.

All but two of the apartments were occupied. The Red Cross did have a shelter set up for displaced people, but we were notified that no one showed up, so they shut the shelter down.