One person died Wednesday night in a fire at a Mountain View apartment complex, officials say.
Multiple 911 calls came in around 8 p.m. reporting a fire at the 400 block of North Bragaw Street, according to Anchorage Fire Department assistant chief Alex Boyd.
Firefighters arrived several minutes after the first call and found flames coming from an upper-level apartment, Boyd said. Police at the scene began evacuating residents from the 20-unit building.
Crews began a search based on reports that a resident was still inside the apartment, according to a fire department statement.
Police and firefighters brought a person found on a balcony outside the burning apartment to the ground for medical treatment, Boyd said. The person died at the scene.
No one else was injured, Boyd said. Firefighters controlled the blaze roughly 20 minutes after their arrival. The fire was contained to the original unit, but several nearby units were damaged by smoke and water, he said.
Residents of the uninvolved part of the building activated the fire alarm, helping alert others, the department said. Crews held the fire to the one apartment, which was heavily damaged, though several other apartments received water damage.
All residents were displaced Wednesday night, and the American Red Cross Alaska chapter provided assistance along with People Mover, officials said.
Red Cross spokeswoman Taylar Sausen said it appeared likely that residents would be able to return home to the apartment complex Thursday evening, after initial uncertainty over whether natural gas could be restored to provide heat. “We provided assistance to one family so far with the potential for one more family,” she said.
It wasn’t immediately clear if there were working smoke detectors in the apartment, fire officials say. An investigation is ongoing into the cause and origin of the fire.
Five people have died in fires in Anchorage so far this year; another person died just hours before the start of 2023. Authorities listed probable causes including improperly handled smoking materials, a space heater too close to combustibles, and an obstructed dryer vent. One fire was considered by investigators to be intentionally set.