'Whole thing gone,' parents say of burned apartment
Montavious Bass felt his covers getting hot early Tuesday morning in an upstairs unit of a Warner Robins apartment complex.
The 11-year-old noticed smoke and woke up his brother and parents at about 4 a.m.
His mother, Quantisha Harris, called 911 as his dad, Tawonn Bass, tried to extinguish the fire.
Harris got their five children out safely and then urged Bass to come out.
“Baby, it’s just through. It’s through,” Harris told him.
The kids, ages 2 to 12, escaped in their night clothes and were huddled under white sheets as firefighters put out the blaze in Building Q on the back side of the Savannah Apartment Homes at 120 Ignico Drive.
Warner Robins Fire Chief Ross Moulton said the flames spread through the attic of the eight-unit brick building.
“It was really smoky when we got here. The smoke was laying low,” Moulton said.
Four families, including the Basses, were forced from their beds, he said.
Tawonn Bass was thankful his son alerted the family to the danger.
“I guess he noticed that it started smoking, so he came and got me, and I jumped up,” Bass said. “His mattress was on fire. It started from the plug.”
Firefighters said everyone in the building got out safely as the flames spread from the Bass family’s second floor unit.
“There’s significant damage to the second floor,” Moulton said as smoke was still rising from the building.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
“The firefighters did a great job of getting up there and getting the job done, getting ceilings pulled and keeping the fire from spreading to the entire complex,” he said.
The 100 block of Ignico Drive was blocked by firehouses, but that didn’t stop cars from trying to get around the Warner Robins police cruisers.
“You have to go around. There’s been a fire here,” one officer repeatedly told drivers undeterred by the flashing lights.
The American Red Cross was on the scene to assist the families affected.
When asked about damage to his apartment, Tawonn Bass said, “From what we’ve seen, the whole thing gone.”