Residents forced to move after 2nd Bellevue fire

Posted at 5:02 PM, Jul 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-27 19:23:43-04

Residents are moving out and a firefighter is recovering after the second fire in a week at a Bellevue apartment complex.

A large fire breaks out Tuesday afternoon at the Gateway Park Apartments near Fort Crook Rd. and Cornhusker Rd.  It's familiar to firefighters who put out a blaze on the other end of the building on Friday.  The Friday fire started on a 3rd floor balcony while Tuesday it ignited on the second floor.

So far investigators are still trying to determine what caused each of them.

"In my 30 some year career I don't think I've ever witnessed this, two fires in the same building basically 4 days apart yes it is unusual,” said Assistant Bellevue Fire Chief Steve Betts.

Two people were injured in Tuesday's blaze. 

Kevin Ohri, 30, joined the Bellevue FD six months ago was taken to the hospital with a back injury.  He's since gone home.

Residents in the apartment building are now forced to move out.  Permits and Inspections has deemed it uninhabitable so people are salvaging what they can.

For most of Wednesday afternoon, residents found whatever they could to transport belongings.

Dorothy Petrie has lived here for 10 years and worried if she could find anything that she could save.  To her surprise her apartment had water damage, but her sentimental items like her wedding photo from 1960 and a recent family portrait with her late husband were unharmed.

Petrie says she's lucky to have help from her family during this trying time.

"Yes it does because otherwise I'd be sitting on that stoop bawling my eyes out,” Petrie explained.

The NE Fire Marshals Office is still trying to determine the cause of both fires.

BFD says that the fire alarms were working in the entire unit.