ORLANDO, Fla. — Firefighters from Orlando and Orange County say a large fire at an apartment complex was accidental.
The fire erupted around 8:05 a.m. Wednesday at the Royal Isles apartment complex at 803 Don Quixote Ave near Stonewall Jackson Middle School in Orlando.
Aerial video showed flames and thick, black some towering into the air.
As many as 64 people have been displaced, according to Orlando fire, including 16 children, said Asst. Chief Paul Plaugher, who credited one of those children with calling 911.
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On Thursday, Orlando Fire investigators said the fire was an accident and not malicious or suspicious, although the exact cause has not yet been determined because of the extent of the fire damage.
The Red Cross said it is assisting 11 families and the Salvation Army is on hand to feed the displaced residents.
Four families will be moved to other units within the apartment complex, while seven other families will be housed elsewhere, the Red Cross said.
Ana Nunez, who was blocks away from the fire, said her friends were in an apartment when the flames ignited.
"It was very scary," she said. "Just hearing the roof collapse -- it was just very horrible, just a nightmare."
Resident Jeannette Duggins said she was in her apartment when she heard someone knocking on the door.
"I got (oxygen) tanks all in my house," Duggins said. "I thought one of them would blow, and they just tried to hurry up and get me out."
Residents watched as the blaze consumed all that they owned.
"They just got out alive and safe. That's the most important thing they did," Nunez said.
At least 12 apartments in three buildings were damaged, according to Orlando Fire. No residents or firefighters were injured.
Displaced residents told Channel 9 that one of their neighbors was trying to repair an air conditioning unit when it caught fire.
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Location of fire:
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