Man found shot, firefighters rescue residents amid massive blaze

A massive blaze broke out inside a Miami apartment complex where a man was found shot Monday morning, authorities said, triggering a vest emergency response that’s seen residents rescued from their balconies and at least two firefighters hospitalized.

Authorities first received calls about the fire at Temple Court Apartments, a four-story building just outside downtown Miami, at 8:15 a.m., Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said an a news conference.

At the scene, officials found one person suffering from gunshot wounds inside the building. The person, who has not been identified, was taken to Jackson Memorial Hospital, the mayor said. It’s unclear if the shooting was connected with the fire.

Meanwhile, firefighters began attempts to quell the flames from the inside the building, Suarez said, adding that many people managed to escape the building, including some residents who were rescued from their balconies. More than 40 fire department units were deployed to the incident, which Suarez said is the first three-alarm fire in Miami in 25 years.

A photo from City of Miami Fire Rescue shows a three-alarm fire that engulfed an apartment building near downtown Miami on Monday, June 6, 2024.

A photo from City of Miami Fire Rescue shows a three-alarm fire that engulfed an apartment building near downtown Miami on Monday, June 6, 2024.

Two firefighters were hospitalized due to heat exhaustion and both were in stable condition, the mayor said.

Suarez said he did not know how may people in total were evacuated. When asked if there were any casualties, Suarez said “it’s too early to tell,” adding that the fire department and police department will provide updates throughout the day.

Videos showed large plumes of smoke billowing skyward from the top floor as firefighters battled the flames from the outside, spraying large amounts of water onto the building.

Chiquita Thomas-Butler with the Miami Police Department said it was an “isolated” incident, meaning there’s no “gunman” at large.

“It is still very active with everything but we don’t want people to be alarmed and we are handling it to the best of our abilities,” she said. Officials set up a unified command to streamline communications between the fire department, police department and other agencies.

Residents who escaped the building were at a staging area outside the building before authorities began moving them to Jose Marti Park, where food and medicine were being provided, Suarez said.

“They seem in relatively good spirits given the fact that obviously they’re in a situation that is incredibly difficult for them and for their families to witness,” he said.

U.S. Rep. MarĂ­a Elvira Salazar said in a post on social media that her office is closely monitoring the fire.

“Very thankful for the firefighters at the City of Miami Fire Department who are working hard to put out the fire and rescue residents inside,” Salazar said.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Massive fire engulfs Miami apartment building; one person found shot

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