- Associated Press - Sunday, July 19, 2015

HONOLULU (AP) - Eleven people are looking for new housing after a three-alarm fire destroyed a Honolulu home Saturday morning.

The fire displaced six women and five men and caused about $500,000 in damage. Authorities say it destroyed two structures on the same lot and caused minor damage to a small cottage, reported the Honolulu Star Advertiser (https://bit.ly/1JqOvVK).

“I’m pretty much homeless right now,” said 20-year-old Keana Paez.

She had lived in the lot’s two-bedroom Quonset hut since she was 6 years old. Paez said she woke Saturday to her mother yelling about a fire and grabbed her laptop and wallet before running barefoot out of the home.

Her father, Manuel Paez, said he smelled something burning and saw flames coming from his landlord’s home when he went outside to investigate.

The two-story house in the city’s McCully neighborhood was engulfed in flames by the time firefighters arrived. About 40 firefighters from 13 companies fought the blaze, said Honolulu fire Capt. James Todd.

The fire started around 8:20 a.m. and was under control by 9:37 a.m., according to Todd.

The Paez family was able to get out safely with their 11-year-old pit bull, Keo. But Manuel Paez lost two birds he kept in a cage next to the Quonset hut.

“All we saw was flames,” said Danalei Paez, Keana’s mother. “It just happened so fast.”

Todd said a firefighter was taken to the hospital as a precaution after a 2-pound concrete tile hit his helmeted head. He was later released.

Red Cross is helping the displaced residents.


Information from: Honolulu Star-Advertiser, https://www.staradvertiser.com

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