Apartment complex fire leaves one person burned, families displaced

BEAVERTON, Ore. - One person was burned and several families were displaced in a blaze that tore through a Beaverton apartment complex Friday morning.

The fire happened at the Country Oaks Apartments at 13795 S.W. Electric Street.

Ted Howlett lives just a couple of doors over from the unit that first caught fire. He was in the shower and didn't hear a neighbor banging on his door. Instead, it was his cat that got his attention.

"The cat came running into the bathroom and was howling and scratching," Howlett said. "There was a lot of smoke coming in through the windows. It was coming in through the closet. I got out the cat carrier and the cat went right in. He knew it was time to get out of the apartment."

Howlett said in all the chaos he ran into the neighbor who accidentally set the fire.

"He had put something on the stove and then went to take a shower or something like that and came back and his entire kitchen was on fire," he said.

Fire officials say flames burned along the roof line and into apartment units. Three units ended up with fire damage and several others with smoke and water damage. A cooking fire is to blame.

According to Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue, a person did suffer burns and was taken to the hospital but the injuries were not life threatening.