Indiana apartment fire displaces 9 families, sends child to hospital

Mayor: Donations 'urgently needed'
Posted at 3:04 PM, Feb 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-07 07:29:48-05

BATESVILLE, In. -- Nine families were displaced after a fire destroyed an apartment complex Monday morning.

The fire started around 9 a.m. at a small row of apartments between West Pearl and Boehringer streets in Batesville, Indiana, according to a news release.

Amy Hernandez was dozing in her apartment when her 4-year-old son woke her, crying.

"He said, ‘Mommy, mommy, there’s too much smoke,'" she said.

Thanks to his wake-up call, Hernandez was able to escape from the fire with him just in time. Another child was less lucky: Firefighters found him stumbling toward the door and trying to get out on his own.

Authorities transported him to Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis, and Hernandez said Monday night that her prayers were with him.

"As a mom, don’t ever take your kids for granted," she said. "Because you don’t know from one day to the next."

The city has established a relief fund for the families and donations are “urgently needed," the release said. Cash and clothing can be dropped off by 5 p.m. Wednesday at the Memorial Building at 132 S. Main Street.

“My prayers are with the individuals impacted by this tragedy,” Mayor Mike Bettice said in the release. “I am grateful to the many first responders from around the area who worked to limit the spread of the fire. The City’s focus right now is on the victims and I believe our community can rally together to help them get back on their feet.”

The cause of the fire was unknown Monday night, but the fire department said it did not appear to be suspicious.