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Placerville Police Calling Apartment Fire Suspicious

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Flames tore through an apartment complex in Placerville just before 5 a.m. Tuesday morning.

Before firefighters could arrive, the roof collapsed and two people were severely burned, and airlifted out.

“Because of our distance from the closest burn center, usually you can get there faster if we fly them out,” Paul Lohan of El Dorado County Fire.

One of the victims had second and third degree burns over 50 percent of his body and the fire burned hot and fast. Why it burned so fast that is still a mystery to firefighters who say they are usually on scene before a fire gets that big, and out of control.

“Usually, if there is significant burns and as much fire activity as there was before we arrived, we do look at what caused the fire to get that big that fast,” Lohan said.

Placerville Police have ruled the fire suspicious and got a search warrant to extensively look for evidence in the apartment where the fire started.

“I think it’s always prudent to go in there to get a warrant in the event that we do discover something that changes our investigation,” Placerville Police Sgt. John Meuser with Placer Police Department.

Neighbors in the area say this apartment on Woodridge Court has had many problems – an electrical fire last year being the least of them.

“A lot of issues in the past. Drugs, kids taken away. Not a very good neighborhood,” neighbor James McGregor said.

Most of the complex is a total loss all units residents will have to find new places to live.

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