MASON CITY, IA — An apartment fire forced the evacuation of several apartments in Mason City Sunday evening.
The blaze broke out before 7 p.m. in a building located on the 400 block of North Pennsylvania Ave. Several firefighters and ambulances responded, but no injuries have been reported.
A neighbor tells KIMT News 3 the fire started in the kitchen of an apartment across the hall from a Cinco de Mayo party involving six children and three adults. Kristina Portis, one of the mothers holding the party, says the group noticed a sound, and opened their door to a smoke-filled hallway. They went into the apartment the smoke appeared to be coming from, and noticed flames falling from a mounted microwave falling onto the stovetop below.
Portis says she told the others to get out while she searched for a fire extinguisher, but couldn’t find one.
“I ran around everywhere in the apartment looking for a fire extinguisher because I rent and everywhere else I’ve ever rented they’ve always had some type of fire extinguisher,” Portis said. ”Every landlord should have to provide that.”
Portis says she tried to put down the flames using flour, but it didn’t work. Firefighters responded and put the fire out. No damage could be seen from the outside of the building.