No cause yet for NMB beach house fire

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) Multiple families living in a multi-unit beach house in North Myrtle Beach are out of a home and two people remain hospitalized following an early morning fire.

North Myrtle Beach firefighters responded to a fire Wednesday morning in the 800 block of South Ocean Boulevard around 5:30 a.m.

Spokesman for North Myrtle Beach, Pat Dowling, says a total of nine people are currently displaced and three victims were transported to hospitals following the fire. Dowling added one person has since been released, however, two remain in care at this time. Their injuries appear to be non-life threatening.

Nancy Conley with the American Red Cross said Disaster Action Team members were meeting with each family to make sure their needs are met for food, clothing and shelter.

At this point, fire crews aren't sure what started this blaze.

Pam Stevers said waking up to a fire in the multi-unit complex she was living in was a terrifying experience. Stevers said, "My sister and her girlfriend woke up and smelled smoke and banged on my door and woke me up. We started running around and grabbing stuff."

Stevers added, "It was scary. You see it all the time on TV with house fires, but it's unbelievable. I was just looking at it with shock, and I am still in shock."

Stevers said she helped get all of the nine people who live in the complex to safety. Stevers stated, "We made it out ok. That's the important thing. There were kids up there."

North Myrtle Beach Fire Chief Tom Barstow said firefighters put the fire out quickly and kept the flames from spreading.

Barstow said, "You can see the damage next door to the siding of the apartment. It's a three story. It's because of the radiant heat off of this building. There was a lot of fire upon arrival of the first two units."

Visitors to the Grand Strand who saw the fire said it has got them thinking about how their family would handle a fire if they were ever put in that situation.

Hugh Thompson said, "We live in a cul-de-sac so we've picked out a location where we would meet and talked with our kids about how they would get out of the house."

Stevers said, "It's important to have a box with important stuff in it where it's easily available to grab."

Copyright 2012 WMBF News. All rights reserved.