Local/State

Fayetteville motel fire forces out over 40 people

Sunday, February 09, 2014

More than 40 people were forced out of a Fayetteville motel Saturday due to a fire.

The fire started late Saturday afternoon at the Travel Inn in the 300 block of Eastern Boulevard.

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It took about 30 firefighters an hour to extinguish the flames.

Families were evacuated during the fire. Officials say there were children staying there.

No one was hurt, but the motel was badly damaged.

Some of the victims came together and attended a church service Sunday; others are still dealing with shock that they lost everything.

James Hogg was staying at the motel and was planning to be there for a month. His dad was in town visiting him when they were forced to get out.

'We just grabbed a couple of little things. My dad didn't even have time to put his socks on," Hogg said.

Clothes, food, a place to stay, and moral support is being offered to the victims.

"Most people lost pretty much everything and had to get out in a hurry. So some of them weren't able to keep clothing or medications or things like that," said Phil Harris, Executive Director at American Red Cross.

The Red Cross was called in to help move the 41 guests at the inn to the Smith Recreation Center. The Smith Center was closed to the public Saturday night and a police officer was called in to provide security at the site.

On Sunday, the shelter was moved from the Smith Recreation Center to the Salvation Army Shelter.

There is no saying when the repairs will be made to the motel and when it will reopen.

"Right now I have to wait for my insurance people and they will come down here and they will assess," said motel owner Mike Naik.

Just the same, some folks who were staying at the motel are not sure of their next step.

"I wouldn't know right now. It's been too soon I think. Everything happened so fast," Hogg said.

In the meantime, the fire remains under investigation. However, officials have said they believe it was accidental.

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Tags:
north carolina news, cumberland county news, fayetteville news, fire, local/state
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