An unidentified Brazil resident lost nearly all her possessions and was injured in an apartment fire Saturday morning.
Because of the extensive damage in the apartment, a fire marshal with the Indiana Department of Homeland Security Division of Fire and Building Safety investigated the scene to help determine the cause the fire.
"It has been officially ruled accidental," Fire Chief Jim Smith said Monday, explaining the tenant had apparently left something cooking on the stove unattended and it caught fire. "She was very lucky."
According to authorities, the Brazil City Fire Department was dispatched to Apartment 3 at the Logan Court Apartment complex shortly after 1 a.m.
Within three minutes, firefighters arrived on the scene and 15 minutes later, they had the fire out.
Van Buren Volunteer Fire Department firefighters were notified to standby at the station if BCFD needed assistance with tenants in case the fire spread throughout the building.
"Thankfully we didn't need them. It was a quick response by our guys," Smith told The Brazil Times about the fire, which he said gutted the apartment.
"We were able to get it out pretty fast. Most of the damage was contained to the original apartment."
However, Smith confirmed the two adjoining apartments on each side of the original center apartment received minor smoke damage and one had some minor water damage.
Smith said the young woman who lived in the apartment was covered in so much soot from the extreme heat and thick smoke of the fire it was difficult to determine the extent of her injuries at the fire scene Saturday.
When TransCare personnel transported the soot-covered tenant to St. Vincent Clay Hospital, Smith said doctors treated her for severe smoke inhalation and the subsequent injuries to her nose and throat.
Due to the situation, Smith said he didn't have much time to talk with the fire victims Saturday.
But he confirmed the American Red Cross was contacted to provide assistance to the tenant and the neighboring families who suffered loss of housing due to the fire.