COLORADO SPRINGS – One person is dead and investigators are on the scene after fire crews knocked down a blaze in a multi-unit home in the 600 block of Lakewood Cr. off of Airport Rd. and Academy Blvd.
Neighbors across the street tell News 5 they could see the smoke from the top floors of the Satellite Hotel.
A couple of maintenance workers at the hotel pool said they first thought smoke might be a dark cloud passing by, until they realized the home in front of them was on fire.
“I just thought I saw some clouds and my co-worker actually came over and said ‘mike, I think that house across the street’s on fire!'” said Michael Badolato.
“The huge plume of smoke coming up from the garage,” said Joshua Moran when describing what caught his attention.
“I told my co-worker, ‘hey I think that building’s on fire, call the front desk’ told them to call 911.”
Neighbors say the smoke began to billow up in minutes.
“You literally almost could not see the condos from smoke blocking everything,” added Badolato.
Bill Kirwan saw the fire from the top floor.
“Smoke was all over the place and obviously, all these fire engines and such,” he said.
“Then the ambulance came, then a lot of cars, police and fire cars came so it was quite a bit of commotion.”
Then the realization hit that someone might be inside.
“The first thing that went through my head was ‘oh my god I hope everyone’s ok,'” Badolato added.
Unfortunately, CSPD confirmed one man inside the home didn’t make it out in time and he passed away.
The people who saw the blaze first-hand are coping with the news.
“It’s pretty heartbreaking, I mean any loss of life- it’s a tragedy,” Badolato said.
“If he didn’t make it, I’m sorry to hear that,” said Kirwan.
“If I actually knew someone was in there, I – they probably would’ve been dragging me out from smoke inhalation. I mean, it’s somebody’s life,” added Moran.
The cause of the fire is unknown at this time. Colorado Springs Police Department has not released the identity of the victim and they are conducting a joint investigation with Colorado Springs Fire Department to figure out exactly what happened.
CSPD confirmed one firefighter suffered a minor injury while putting out the blaze.
Investigators are currently treating the area as a crime scene until they determine otherwise.
A spokesperson with CSPD says this is common procedure when there is a death.