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Neighbors assessing property damage after Rocky River condo fire

Posted at 4:32 PM, Feb 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-24 21:31:19-05

ROCKY RIVER, Ohio — People living near the scene of a condominium fire on Hilliard Boulevard in Rocky River are surveying the damage to their property just one day after the blaze.

Scott Bell and his wife live just feet from the condo that was under construction before it caught fire.

Bell was at the grocery store when the fire started Sunday. His wife was home alone.

“She did say the house was probably a goner,” Bell said.

Bell said he felt panicked and helpless as he tried to safely navigate a maze of road closures to find his wife.

“She was screaming for the police or the fire department,” Bell said. “They couldn’t hear her but a lady next door heard her so they came and got her from the side.”

Bell and his wife said they’re grateful to multiple responding fire crews, as well as Mother Nature, for sparing their home.

“The wind saved this house,” Bell said. “All these windows are cracked of course and the roof probably needs to be replaced.”

Fairview Park Fire Department officials are also assessing expensive repairs to one of their newest rigs.

“Then you have all the lights that melted that all have to be replaced. You have some of the paint started to get melted,” Chief Tony Raffin said. “The tires that are on the passenger side of the vehicle dried out and started to crack.”

The American Red Cross has helped at least three residents who needed immediate financial assistance after being displaced from their homes next door.

RELATED: Rocky River fire chief says condo blaze is the biggest he's seen in his 20-plus year career