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Apartment fire in Eureka sends man to hospital

EUREKA- A man was sent to the hospital with major injuries on Monday morning when an apartment building caught fire in Eureka.

Just before 8:30 a.m., Humboldt Bay Fire responded to the 100 block of 5th Street, where an apartment on the second floor of the building was engulfed in flames. Crews extinguished the bulk of the fire in 10 minutes and continued to fight patches of flames for another 90 minutes. One occupant sustained non-life threatening 2nd and 3rd degree burns to his torso and was taken to Saint Joseph Hospital.  Authorities believe the fire started on the couch that man was sitting on, but the exact cause is still under investigation.

"As we were trying to suppress the fire and do searches to look for victims inside, occupants kept attempting to reenter the building and once you've identified that the fire is beyond your ability to control, as in a very, very small fire, we ask that everybody stay out of the building and don't try to reenter for pets or any of their belongings.  That's what we're here for and we'll do our best to keep everybody safe," said Battalion Chief Chris Jelinek with Humboldt Bay Fire.

The total damage is estimated to be at $40,000.  Fifth Street from A Street to C Street was closed for about 90 minutes as a result of the fire.