Emergency crews were called to the scene of a fire at the Winston Villa Apartment building on 23 Avenue North Thursday afternoon.
“Mayhem,” one resident said. “People were running around screaming to get out. People were knocking on doors, kids were crying and it was filling up with smoke everywhere you looked.”
WATCH: A devastating fire at the north side Winston Villa apartment complex Thursday has left many without belongings or a home. Matt Battochio has more.
Lethbridge police were advising people to stay away from the area as crews struggled to battle the blaze.
One person was injured in the blaze and close to 20 apartments were affected. Many are left without a place to stay.
Muhammad Hossow said he lost everything he had in the fire except the shirt on his back.
“It’s done, all of it,” Hossow said. “My keys to my car, my documentation, my clothes, my stuff.”
One resident heard about the fire on the radio and rushed home to save his dog. He later learned his dog jumped out of the apartment; he found him two blocks away safe and sound.
Another resident who was blocked from leaving through the entrance by the blaze was forced to escape from his balcony.
“I don’t know where to go to sleep or where to go,” Abdul Kadir Masini said. “Because I have family and children…very hard.”
Flames and smoke could be seen billowing from the building as firefighters sprayed it down with water.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
The Lethbridge Fire Department along with Red Cross is helping displaced residents find a place to stay.
— With files from Matt Battochio