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Fire heavily damages Topeka apartment complex

Fire heavily damages Topeka apartment complex

By Associated Press. CREATED Mar 19, 2014

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) Damage is estimated at $180,000 in a fire that chased a dozen people from a central Topeka apartment complex.

WIBW-TV reports investigators believe the fire late Tuesday at the Pines Apartments originated in a barbecue smoker that was placed too close to combustible materials on a balcony.

No injuries were reported, but firefighters rescued three dogs, two cats and a bearded dragon. The American Red Cross assisted 12 tenants displaced from 10 apartments.

The Pines complex has had its share of calamities. A fire blamed on unattended cooking destroyed 10 units in 2008, and 90 units were destroyed by a fire in 1979.

In addition, a Kansas Highway Patrol communications tower was toppled by high winds in 2005 and crashed onto a building and two cars at the complex.