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Family forced to live out of their car after apartment fire, CMHA says unit still not ready

Posted at 5:51 PM, Feb 28, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-28 17:53:23-05

Four days after a fire ripped through a Cleveland high rise, a family says they've been forced to live out of their car.

They are unable to go back to their apartment until next week, and they have nowhere to go in the meantime.

This is the third fire at the Miles Elmarge apartments in the last ten months.

Lary Samilton and his family were rushed out of their home at that apartment building when flames and plumes of smoke filled the hallways.

“One of my neighbors climbed to my unit to save his life," Samilton said.

The damage was so great his family was not able to return home. They were displaced, like dozens of other families the Red Cross has been assisting.

“They just gave enough to get by for like three days,” said Samilton.

Now, Samilton says the Red Cross funds have run out, and the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority says his unit won’t be ready for another week.

“We out in the street sleeping in our car,” Samilton said.

Jeff Wade, the Director of Safety and Risk Management, said the Red Cross has agreed to free up more funds to assist displaced residents. He said he will be meeting with residents who can't return until next Tuesday to see what additional resources CMHA may provide.