COLUMBIA FALLS — A fire that started in an apartment complex on Fourth Avenue West in Columbia Falls on Sunday afternoon remains under investigation.
Columbia Falls Fire Chief Karl Weeks says the fire started around 2 p.m. and that the nine-unit apartment complex is a total loss.
He says a mom and two-year-child occupied the unit where the fire started and at this time, Weeks says the fire is deemed to be accidental.
Weeks says all of the residents were able to escape the fire without injury. However, he says four firefighters were treated for injuries with one being transported to a local hospital due to extreme heat.
“Three firemen that were treated on scene for heat-related injuries and one of our mutual aid departments actually had one fireman transported for heat-related issues, but he has since been released and is good to go,” said Weeks.
Weeks says the fire was fully put out by 7 p.m. on Sunday.
The Evergreen, West Valley, Bad Rock and Blankenship fire departments all responded to the scene as well as Three Rivers EMS and the Columbia Falls Police Department.
The Montana Red Cross is assisting more than 20 people displaced by the blaze and is providing families with food and housing assistance, helping them replace medications lost in the fire and connecting them with mental health resources and other tools they will need on their road to recovery.