Three-alarm fire damages apartments near UTA

Print
Email
|

by CARLA WADE and JASON WHEELER

Bio | Email | Follow: @CarlaNWade

WFAA

Posted on May 3, 2014 at 5:20 PM

Updated Saturday, May 3 at 10:17 PM

South Campus Apartments

View larger map

ARLINGTON — A three-alarm fire that may be linked to a domestic dispute broke out at an apartment complex adjacent to the University of Texas at Arlington on Saturday afternoon, forcing evacuations.

The fire broke out at the South Campus Apartments at 603 Causley Avenue, just south of the UTA campus, at around 2:30 p.m. Flames were shooting through the roof when the first firefighters arrived.

Arlington Fire Department Battalion Chief J.D. Morris said the disturbance call "did correlate with the apartment number where the fire originated," but the cause of the fire remains under investigation.

A woman identified as Stephanie Cathcart was arrested by Arlington police and faces an assault charge.

One person was taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas for treatment of burns to the feet. Another person whose hands were burned was treated at the scene.

A total of 13 units were damaged in the fire, six of them seriously. Emergency personnel went door-to-door to make sure all residents got out safely.

Salem Altamimi was at home with his wife when an officer knocked on their door.

"My wife, she wasn't ready to leave," he said. "But they gave like 20 seconds to prepare herself and to leave the apartments."

The American Red Cross was providing assistance to those who were displaced.

The fifty firefighters battling the blaze worked in shifts because of the warm afternoon temperature. They were still extinguishing hot spots after three hours on the job.

Some tenants who attend school at nearby UT Arlington wondered aloud whether some important possessions survived the flames.

"I have to leave Arlington at the end of May, and I have my passport and my two IDs because I'm an international student," one fire victim told us.

Residents of apartments that were not damaged in the fire were permitted to return late Saturday afternoon.

The two-story apartment complex was built in 1965, according to tax records. While the South Campus Apartments provides housing to UTA students,  it is not official student housing affiliated with the university.

E-mail cwade@wfaa.com


Raw video of the fire in its early stages:

Print
Email
|