Update: Children cause fire that left several without home - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

Update: Children cause fire that left several without home

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Photo Credit: Ralph Melton Photo Credit: Ralph Melton
NEW BERN, N.C. - Several fire departments battled a fire at Coopers Landing apartments on Simmons Street in New Bern Wednesday morning.

Colleen Roberts, public information officer with New Bern, says investigators site children playing with a lighter as the cause.

About 30 people have been displaced.

The fire affected units occupied by Burmese refugees who were placed there by the Interfaith Refugee Ministry, who helps refugees coming to the country get a fresh start. 

Susan Husson is the Director of the Interfaith Refugee Ministry. She says nothing like this has ever happened.

"It can be very shocking for the families because they had one time in their lives where they lost everything, and they don't know what to do, and they don't know where to go. Now again, they're here and pretty much they lost everything," said Husson.

Firefights came from different areas to battle the flames, including New Bern, West New Bern, Township 7 and Little Swift Creek.

Colleen Roberts with the city of New Bern says battling a fire in these types of temperatures can be dangerous.

She says they rotate shifts so firefighters have the chance to cool down and stay hydrated.

The Red Cross opened a shelter at Faith United Methodist Church in New Bern at 7pm Wednesday to temporarily house residents until alternate housing can be located. Volunteers will provide meals and meet individually with each family to being casework to determine the need for additional assistance including clothes, replacement medications and other supplies.

The fire damaged 8 apartments. 

If you would like to help the victims of this fire, call the Interfaith Refugee Ministry at 252-633-9009, or click here.

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