Montgomery County, MD - - - Units from Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service (MCFRS) were dispatched to an apartment complex in the 9300 block of Piney Branch Road in Silver Spring about 3:43 this afternoon for the initial report of smoke in the building. First-arriving units reported heavy smoke conditions and fire showing and requested additional units. A second alarm and several additional pieces of apparatus were dispatched as firefighters quickly rescued several residents trapped by the fast-moving blaze.
Firefighters from Prince Georges, Howard County and the District of Columbia assisted and the fire was brought under control within 2 ½ hours. Firefighters remain on the scene extinguishing hot spots, monitoring conditions and conducting overhaul operations of the heavily damaged apartment complex.
Seven civilians were transported to area hospitals with non-life threatening injuries and three firefighters were transported to local hospitals with minor, non-life threatening injuries.
Montgomery County Fire and Explosive Investigators determined the origin and cause of the fire to be an electrical outlet near a mattress. The mattress was ignited and the flames spread to the upper floors via a pipe chase. The American Red Cross has set up temporary operations at the Long Branch Community Recreation Center to assist residents displaced by the apartment fire. Over 100 firefighters were on the scene at the height of operations.
Damage estimates are $1 million to the structure and $500K to the contents.