June 1, 2023



We now know what caused the Wednesday apartment fire in Roanoke.


We’re told that it was the result of a cooking accident.

One woman we spoke with says the fire started in her apartment while she was cooking tater tots.

It happened around 10:35 p.m. on Rutgers Avenue in the northwest part of the city. Crews arrived to find fire and heavy smoke coming from three floors of the apartment building.

Firefighters rescued five people when they arrived on the scene.

Three of the five people rescued are hurt and two were taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation.

The fire caused about $375,000 in damage, affecting 12 apartments.

The American Red Cross is assisting 18 of the 34 people displaced by the fire.

No firefighters were injured.

We’ll post updates as they come into the newsroom.

See a photo gallery of damage caused by the fire here: http://www.wdbj7.com/news/local/24958082

Here’s the news release:

On Wednesday, March 12, 2014, Roanoke Fire-EMS responded to a second alarm structure fire at 4815 Rutgers St., Valley View Village.  The call was received in the E-911 Center at approximately 10:35pm and was under control
by 11:05pm.

Thirty-four Fire-EMS personnel responded to the scene, as well as the Roanoke Police Department and a crew from Roanoke County Fire & Rescue.

When crews arrived they found fire and smoke showing from a first floor window of an apartment complex with heavy smoke showing from the third floor.  When firefighters got off the truck, they found a victim in the third story window above the fire with heavy black smoke coming out from around them.  That victim was quickly rescued by ground ladders with an additional four other rescues being performed shortly after.  Three civilians were injured – two were transported to the hospital with smoke inhalation. No firefighters were injured.

The American Red Cross responded to the scene and assisted 18 of the 34 people displaced. A total of 12 apartments were affected by the fire.
Damage estimates are approximately $375,000.  The fire has been ruled accidental and was caused by cooking.


Here are the latest numbers from the Roanoke Fire Department on the Rutgers Street apartment building fire

Residents displaced: 34

Residents assisted by American Red Cross: 18

Apartments damaged: 12

Residents rescued: 5

Residents injured: 3

Residents hospitalized with smoke inhalation: 2

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