Portland firefighters rescue man from burning apartment

Portland firefighters rescue man from burning apartment
(Photo: Dick Harris, PF&R photographer)

PORTLAND, Ore. – Firefighters rescued a man from a fire at a Northeast Portland apartment complex Monday morning, and the man is safe thanks to his neighbors, who noticed the apartment building was on fire.

The fire started just after 9 a.m. at a complex located at 6424 N.E. Simpson Street, according to Portland Fire and Rescue spokesman Lt. Rich Chatman.

Crews found a fire on the outside of the building that was extending into the attic when they arrived.

Firefighters found a man inside the apartment during their search and brought him to safety. Chatman said the rescued man suffered from smoke inhalation.

The man's neighbors heard a loud noise and went to see what it was. That's when they discovered the apartment building was on fire.

"I banged on the door, and the lady answered the door," said Jim Foster. "And I said, 'Your house is on fire.' And she said, 'No it isn't.'"

But there was a fire.

Foster helped evacuate people from a unit next door to the flames, but Portland firefighters had to go back for his neighbor. The man relies on oxygen tanks to breath and needs help getting in and out of bed.

No one besides the man was hurt in the fire.

Investigators said that, "smokers material improperly discarded in a garbage can" caused the fire. There was about $11,000 of damage to the apartment complex.