One person killed in massive Lenexa apartment complex fire
9:56 AM, Jul 22, 2011
3:35 PM, Aug 1, 2011
LENEXA, Kansas - At least 60 people are searching for a new home after a massive apartment fire Friday. One person was killed in the fire that destroyed the three-story apartment building in Lenexa.
The victim is believed to be an adult male.
Firefighters were not only battling flames, but the extreme heat at the two-alarm fire that broke out about 9:30 a.m. in the Oak Park Village apartments at 9658 Halsey, near Oak Park Mall.
Five emergency workers including two firefighters and two police officers suffered heat exhaustion and dehydration. A resident was treated on the scene for heat-related issues, but refused to be transported.
The building is a complete loss. The building houses 36 units, said Jason Rhodes, a spokesman with the Overland Park Fire Department, who was called in to assist with fighting the fire.
Johnson County MedAct crews and Lenexa police were also on scene and the Merriam Fire Department was called to assist.
Arriving crews were delayed in entering the building as they found smoke and flames had already consumed the building and immediately went into a defensive mode, Rhodes said.
Viewers who sent in pictures from blocks away could see huge plumes of smoke billowing from the building.
Authorities said they had set up a triage center for firefighters battling the heat.
Of the 36 units, 34 were occupied. The American Red Cross is assisting 18 families displaced by the fire.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.