Phoenix Fire: 11 people displaced after early morning fire in west Phoenix

Posted at 5:41 PM, Jun 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-29 07:34:21-04

Firefighters are investigating a blaze that broke out early Wednesday morning in west Phoenix.

The Phoenix Fire Department received reports of a fire at an apartment complex near 67th Avenue and Thomas Road.

Residents were able to escape unharmed before firefighters arrived at the scene, a Phoenix fire spokesperson said.

Noemi Portillo said she and her two children were in the apartment when the fire started.

"The baby moved and I woke up — I opened my eyes and I got the smell," Portillo said. "I went to look and the living room was just on fire."

Portillo said her 3-year-old, Jose, was hidden between the covers and she couldn't immediately locate him.

"I was yelling and yelling," she said. "I couldn't find him in there. I was just yelling; trying to touch the bed but I couldn't feel him. It's a horrible, horrible feeling..."

Neighbor Isella Moreno woke up to the screams.

"There were screams and there was a lot of knocking," Moreno said. "They were saying 'Get out, get out there's a fire.'"

Unaware of what was happening, Moreno said she woke up in a state of confusion.

"We walked out and it was like an inferno," Moreno said. "It was kind of scary because it was really close to us."

The flames were quickly put out and the fire did not extend beyond the initial unit that it sparked in, officials said.

"I think the hero was my baby," Portillo said. "He moved. If he hadn't moved I don't know what would have happened."

Unfortunately, Portillo lost everything in the fire.

"I just thank God for anther day for my family," she explained. "Just seeing them is everything. We're going to have to start over again but we're OK."

Eleven people are displaced from their homes as a result of the incident.

Firefighters are still investigating the cause of the blaze. 

Stay with ABC15 News and for the latest information.