LAKE IN THE HILLS - One person was injured and more than a dozen were displaced in a fire that broke out late Tuesday night at an apartment building in Lake in the Hills, fire officials said.
Algonquin-Lake in the HIlls Fire Protection District Chief Patrick Mullen said a call came in at 11:53 p.m. Tuesday from a passerby of a three-story apartment building on fire at 1363 Cunat Court.
First responders initially arrived on scene to find the second and third floor balconies fully engulfed and started evacuation of the building, Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire Protection District Assistant Chief Peter VanDorpe said.
An older man had to be rescued from the balcony of the burning building and was transported to Sherman Hospital for smoke inhalation, Mullen said, adding the man is in stable condition and was the only person transported from the scene.
Lake in the Hills Police Sgt. Lloyd Howen said there were no serious injuries to residents or emergency responders.
Neighbor Danny Chavez said he saw the man on the balcony and yelled to ask him why he wasn't leaving. He said the man said there was too much smoke. Chavez said he alerted police and firefighters who then got the man down with a ladder.
Chavez said the flames shot into the air at least 30 feet.
"It was horrible. It was scary," Chavez said.
Officials said they declared the fire under control about 1:10 a.m. They said it appeared the bulk of the fire damage was on the outside of the building, including the roof and balcony. VanDorpe said 18 apartments were damaged in the blaze.
"The building has sprinklers," VanDorpe said. "Without the sprinklers it would have been much, much worse. That's what helped the residents. It helped the fire from spreading faster."
A wing of the of the building is uninhabitable, and Red Cross was on scene to assist displaced residents, Mullen said.
Mullen said no cause has been determined and the fire remains under investigation. A damage estimate was not available. The Illinois State Fire Marshal's Office is investigating the incident.
"There is a lot of damage to sift through," Mullen said.
Fifteen communities provided mutual aid and 63 firefighters were on scene, he said.