Nineteen people were displaced when a hotel near Anchorage’s international airport caught fire Sunday morning, and no injuries or deaths were reported, according to Anchorage Fire Department officials.
The Anchorage Fire Department received a call around 5:50 a.m. about the fire at the America’s Best Value Inn and Suites, located on the 4300 block of Spenard Road, according to deputy chief Alex Boyd. The department responded with 19 units and brought the fire under control by about 7:45 a.m., Boyd said.
The fire displaced 19 occupants of the 44-unit hotel, Fire Battalion Chief Nathan Paulson said.
An initial shelter site has been established at the Spenard Community Recreation Center, Boyd said. The Red Cross responded in case there was a large group of people needing relocation assistance, but occupants displaced by the fire were able to receive other accommodations, said Taylar Sausen, spokesperson with the American Red Cross of Alaska.
The department will be investigating the official cause of the fire, but it looks like the flames started at a bathroom ceiling fan and spread into the attic space and third floor — the main area where the blaze was contained, Fire Captain Zach Westin said at the hotel Sunday.
“It’s mostly the third floor for fire damage and the roof. The second and first is all water damage,” Westin said. He pointed to the building with charred windows at the top floor and water dripping from the walls. “This is not habitable right now.”
Florida resident Carey Pollock has been staying at the hotel and was there Sunday morning when the fire started. She was among the occupants who evacuated.
“There was a knock on my door at 5:30 in the morning to get up and get out,” she said. “I left all my stuff, and there was flames from the top.”
At about 1 p.m., Pollock came back to the hotel to get her belongings and relocate.
Fire crews will remain at the scene through the afternoon to clean up and make sure there are no hot spots, Westin said.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
[Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that the Red Cross responded to the fire but did not need to offer shelter assistance, as originally reported.]