Sherman motel burns while guests try to escape - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Sherman motel burns while guests try to escape

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SHERMAN, TX -- Around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday night, the Sherman Fire Department received a call from a guest at the Executive Inn. Firefighters were on the scene within three and a half minutes.  

"Police officers first on the scene let us know that several units of the second floor were on fire," said Fire Chief Jeff Jones. "He also reported that several of the occupants were trapped."

No one was injured, but guests say the motel didn't have a fire escape route.

"People banging on each other's windows and doors," said Lewis West Sr., a guest at the motel. "Get out, get out there's a fire [people said]. And people coming over balconies, there's a man running through the fire he had a baby in each arm last night because there's no way to get out from there."

Difficulty escaping wasn't the only complaint from guests. Some say their smoke detectors didn't go off.

"Everyone I talked to last night said their smoke alarms didn't have batteries in it," said West, "every one."

Chief Jones says they're looking into that issue Wednesday. He says they respond to the Executive Inn often.

"We've had several calls there," said Jones. "In fact we had a fire about 7 weeks ago, another fire there in just one unit."

The owner of the motel declined to comment. Chief Jones says the fire caused nearly $1 million of damage.

"In total, twenty units were damaged," said Chief Jones, "sixteen of those were heavily damaged and four more suffered some smoke and water damage."

It took officials close to half hour to control the fire. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but officials believe it was sparked by an electrical issue in the second floor.