Firefighters from Rural/Metro and the Karns Volunteer Fire Department have contained a fire at a West Knox County apartment building.
The apartments, which do not have a name, are located at 9160 Cedarpark Lane in the Cedar Bluff area. There are four units in the building that is on fire. According to Rural/Metro Chief Jerry Harnish, 16 people lived in the building, but everyone made it out safely. No one was injured.
There is significant damage to the building, most of it in the attic area.
911 received several calls about the fire, which started as a severe thunderstorm was moving through the area. One caller reported that lightning struck the building.
Katherine Lee has lived in the building for nearly 20 years.
"I was upstairs and the only thing I heard was a big boom. I realized the lightning had hit something, but I didn't realize it had hit my building," she said.
She said her neighbor came to her door warning her to get out.
"It was smoking [really] bad, and then when the firetrucks got here, the flames started shooting."
The first firefighters were on scene at 3:25 Tuesday afternoon. Flames had already broken through the roof of the building when they arrived.
The Red Cross says 16 people, 12 adults and four children,
will be staying in a hotel.
Lee and her daughter, Kenyetta Hill, will be among those staying in the hotel.
"We [were] able to salvage a few things, but we lost a lot," she said."
"That's ok, as long we didn't lose our life."