15 residents from a senior citizen living center in Kinston have been displaced. A fire broke out in the kitchen of one of the units late Thursday night.
Crews worked overtime on Friday to get the residents back into their homes.
Fire officials said the blaze started in the kitchen of a residential apartment on the 7th floor.
The fire triggered the sprinklers and the alarms.
Officials said the blaze was small and contained, but the sprinkler system ended up flooding four floors of the building.
"I did not know exactly what was going on because I was trying to obey what they were saying, to leave the building," said resident Roslyn Murriell. "We had the alarms saying leave the building."
Authorities say the residents will be staying with family, while others will be put up at a local shelter.
No word yet on when the clean up will be complete.
Nearly 15 senior citizens were evacuated from their homes late Thursday night after a kitchen fire on the seventh floor.
Assistant Chief of the Kinston Department of Public Safety, Don Crawford, tells WITN crews got the call at 10:10 pm to Kinston Hotel on North Queen Street.
Crawford said they have determined a small kitchen fire started on the seventh floor of the facility, but was put out by sprinklers. Crawford said the problem was the sprinklers put two to three inches of water into the unit and the water spread to the rest of the floor, trickling down to the sixth, fifth, and fourth floors.
Emergency responders opted to cut power to the fourth through tenth floors to minimize any other risks.
Residents from the fourth through tenth floors were evacuated as a precaution. Crawford said elevator service was shut off with the power, so residents living above the flooded floor had to leave. That was a precaution in case those residents had any sort of emergency. In that situation, the stairs would have been the only way to get to anyone who needed emergency attention, according to Crawford.
Crawford said of the nearly 15 people evacuated from Kinston Hotel, most will be staying with family while the others will be put up at a local hotel or shelter.
Along with the Kinston Department of Public Safety's fire, rescue, and police force responding, Lenoir Emergency Medical Services also were on hand to assist in the evacuation.
Crawford said there is no word yet when the clean up will be complete and the facility ready for residents on the effected seven floors.
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