6 people injured in metro Detroit apartment fire

Posted at 4:00 AM, Mar 29, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-29 18:30:40-04

At least six people suffered smoke inhalation and more than a dozen others were forced to evacuate their homes in Royal Oak Township following a fire overnight.

Fire investigators say the fire started when a man dropped a lighter on his couch.  The lighter did not go out.  It ignited the couch. 

"The smoke detectors in his apartment were gone.  Only wires were hanging," said Brian Batten, Ferndale Fire Marshall.  "I am not sure if he took it down or if they took it down when they were treating for bed bugs."

The fire happened at Royal Oak Towers which is located at Wyoming and W. 8 Mile. It is an 11-story building. Most of the people who live there are elderly.

Firefighters say that all of the units on the first and second floors were damaged by water.  They found temporary shelter for some residents.  The apartment management says crews are working to clean and make repairs so that almost everyone  can return to their homes today.  The man who lived in the apartment where the fire started will be displaced for some time due to significant damage.

The American Red Cross has been called in to assist victims who were forced from their homes.