MIAMI GARDENS - A fire
emergency erupted in Miami Gardens as massive flames
engulfed dozens of units at an apartment building, leaving
nearly 200 people displaced.
Miami Gardens Police and Miami-Dade Fire Rescue units
responded to the scene of the blaze at the New World
Condominium Apartments along the 39500 block of Northwest
177th Street, just before 10:30 a.m., Saturday.
numerous calls of people panicking in the building, unknown
where the smoke or fire is coming from,” said a dispatcher
in radio transmissions.
Videos provided by MDFR and a 7News viewer captured dark
billowing smoke that was visible for miles.
The blanket of smoke covered dozens of apartments as the
fire quickly spread across the two-story building.
“I told my mom that I smelled smoke,”
said Daniel, a young resident. “She told all of us to go run
“There were flames
coming from the apartment, next to us and a lot of black
smoke coming over,” said his mother, Cheree.
More than 40 MDFR units responded to the scene. The fire
fight lasted most of the day, and at one point, part of the
building’s roof collapsed.
Crews were able to stop the flames from spreading further
and place the fire under control.
In total, officials said, 75 units were affected.
“Approximately half were destroyed as a result of a partial
collapse of the roof, coupled with water damage and smoke
and fire damage,” said MDFR Fire Chief Ray Jadallah.
Inspectors have deemed the building unsafe.
7News cameras captured residents grabbing what they could
from their homes.
Others waited to see whether they would be allowed back
“Everything that we own is inside the building, so we’re
slowly processing the loss,” said Cheree.
Local leaders like Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine
Cava were seen showing their support, as the county, city
and the American Red Cross offered some assistance.
“[We have been left with] the clothes that we have on our
back,” said Cheree.
Impacted families are now trying to figure out their next
move, but they’re thankful that they are able to walk away
with what’s most important.
“Our health and our life,” said Herring Chambers.
As of Saturday night, no injuries have been reported.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
The Red Cross has set up a shelter for residents who didn’t
have a place to go.