Early morning fire damages Detroit building

An investigation continues after an early morning fire at an apartment building in Detroit on Saturday.

The Detroit Fire Department said it happened around 10:30 a.m. on John R near Woodward and Alfred Street, about a block from Little Caesars Arena. The department believes the fire started on the top floor as a heating unit accident.

Shannon Howell lives in the building, just below the unit where the fire started.

“I was walking out the hall to my other unit and my neighbor came over and said he needed a fire extinguisher,” Howell said. “His furnace was on fire up there and he couldn’t get up because there was too much smoke.”

Ronald Hill and his family were staying in an Airbnb in the building.

“We were about to have breakfast,” Hill said. “They were cooking and we heard the fire engines stop and then my youngest, Junior, he came out and he said the fire engines were coming here. “We heard like a smoke detector and that was enough to say ‘OK, everyone has time’. And while we were going out we were helping other people by making sure they were going out too.

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DFD said fire damage was limited to the top floor, but people inside the building say you can see water damage up to the third floor.

The American Red Cross was on hand to help people from five different units in the building.

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