Several people suffer injuries in Camden house fire

CAMDEN, New Jersey (WPVI) -- Six people were injured after a fire in a Camden early Tuesday morning.

The injuries were not life-threatening.

The fire started around 6 a.m. on the 2600 block of Baird Boulevard, which down the block from a firehouse.

Fire officials say a woman ran from the home to the nearby firehouse, rang the doorbell, and told firefighters the house was on fire.

Action News spoke to Nic'Ela, Whitney Stewart, and John Jenkins who had just returned from the hospital.

They said seven adults live in the house and they were all asleep when the fire started.

"The girl in the middle room, she just came in and said, 'Help me, help me,'" Nic'Ela said. "I tried my hardest to help her. I cut up my hands; we just got back from the hospital."

Nic'Ela said the bottom of a mattress caught on fire.

"I told her a million times to stop lighting candles, that's why we don't play with candles," Nic'Ela said.
"I was trying to help put out the fire and everything, but I didn't know how big the fire was," Stewart said.

Stewart said she realized the fire was too big to extinguish with a bottle of water, and the seven people who lived there evacuated.

They said one man jumped from an upper floor.

"He broke his leg. He's still at the hospital," Nic'Ela said.

When firefighters arrived, everyone was already outside.

The fire was placed under control within 15 minutes, but the house sustained major damage; the home next door suffered water damage and broken windows.

"Potential for it to spread to the next house, but they got a water line on it very quickly and knocked the fire down," said Camden Fire Chief Michael Harper.

Harper added, "We're not sure whether the people that were injured were squatters or not. We're going to do some investigation; the fire marshal's in now doing an investigation."

Harper noted that the house did have electric.

Nic'Ela, Stewart, and Jenkins said they do pay rent and now have nowhere to turn.

The cause remains under investigation.
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