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Published March 01, 2013, 04:43 PM

An overnight blaze forces people from their Moorhead apartment

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) -- An overnight blaze forced people from their apartments in Moorhead. Some were trapped and leaped from their windows to escape.

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) -- An overnight blaze forced people from their apartments in Moorhead. Some were trapped and leaped from their windows to escape.

It all started on the first floor of this building, where a man fell asleep with a hot pan on the stove. Just minutes later flames were spewing from the door and 18 families were forced from their homes.

Anna Poitra: "When the smoke alarms starting going off in the hallway that's when I knew."

There's nothing like a late night alert to make you think you might lose it all.

Poitra: "It was scary. I've never ever seen and thing like that before and it was scary."

Anna Poitra lives just a door down from apartment number four....

Poitra: "That guy had his door open and the flames were coming out already."

...and lives along with her husband, plus her 75-year-old mom.

Poitra: "I had to run in there and go get here dressed and had to have her outside in the cold ."

While they waited, Vanessa Estrada from two floors up pulled in to see her apartment burning.

Vanessa Estrada: "Thought that I didn't have anything left in my house."

Lucky, for her, that isn't the case.

Estrada:"It just stinks really bad and like my furniture smells. Like everything I own smells like smoke really bad now."

A few floors below, there's not much left but an odor,

Poitra: "it's kind of crazy how things like that can just happen."

A lingering smell, serving as a reminder.

Poitra: "We are all lucky we've got a place to stay."

As we talked to people living here today, that was the big concern, how they will get rid of this smell. For now, their landlord is out of town so they will have to wait for those answers.

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