ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. (FOX 35 WOFL) - A fire engulfed part of an Altamonte Springs hotel Wednesday morning. One Seminole County firefighter was treated for heat exhaustion, and residents are left wondering what happens next.
Jherson Martinez was one of hundreds of people in surrounding buildings who were evacuated.
“I heard banging, banging, I was like oh my god, lord Jesus, let it be fake or someone going crazy,” Martinez recalled, “I looked outside and see the flames billowing over our building. I just picked up and left with my mom, sister, and dog.”
The only silver lining is that no one was living in the building at the Remington Inn & Suites. Firefighters said it was damaged by Hurricane Irma, and all the residents had to move out after that. They said the management had hoped to renovate it and get the people back inside, but now it looks like the whole structure will have to be demolished.
That’s especially bad news for Georgie Badger. She's living in a smaller room nearby while waiting for management to repair the hurricane damage.
“When they condemned that building when Irma hit it, then they moved us here into this room. And now... this!” Badger said, “I was kind of looking forward to moving back in there after they remodeled it. Now, I'm going to have to find another place to live.”
Firefighters say it's too soon to know how the fire started. They say the fire marshal's office is investigating.