National

Massive fire breaks out in 4-story apartment building near downtown Miami

MIAMI — (AP) — A massive fire broke out at a four-story apartment complex in Miami on Monday morning.

Firefighters and police officers arrived at the building just west of Interstate 95 near downtown Miami after receiving calls about a fire around 8:15 a.m., and began rescuing residents from the building's balconies, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said during a news conference.

Suarez said arriving first responders also found a man with gunshot wounds at the scene. He was taken to a hospital, where he was in critical condition. Officials said the shooting is part of an active investigation. They offered few other details, other than calling it an “isolated incident.”

Atlantic Housing Management, the company that manages Temple Court apartments, said in a statement that one of their employees was found shot inside the complex.

“We are still determining the cause of these events, and we are checking for other injuries. Police are investigating, and we will help in whatever ways we can,” the management company's statement said. “We are grieved by all that has happened today, and our thoughts and prayers are with our team member and his family and residents of the Temple Court community.”

The mayor said two firefighters were also taken to a hospital due to heat exhaustion, and both were in stable condition.

News helicopters showed flames rising from the building along with large plumes of smoke several hours after the fire started. At least two ladder trucks were pouring water and foam onto the building.

The apartment complex consists of one-bedroom and studio units near the Miami River.

Residents from the building, many of them elderly, were taken to a staging area where they were offered food and any medications they needed, Suarez said.

Smoke from the fire was also drifting over Interstate 95, and much of downtown Miami.

It was not immediately known whether anyone was injured in the fire.

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Frisaro reported from Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

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