Melted siding, 7/22

Flames melted the siding on a building at the St. James Manor apartments near 61st Street and the Northwest Radial. The fire on Monday morning left two people injured, including a woman who was in critical condition.

Two people were injured, one critically, in a fire early Monday at the St. James Manor apartments in Benson.

Omaha firefighters were called to the apartments near 61st Street and the Northwest Radial just after midnight, according to Battalion Chief Scott Fitzpatrick. Firefighters found an unconscious woman with burns inside 3209 N. 61st St. She was taken to the Nebraska Medical Center in critical condition.

A second victim was rescued from the building and taken to the same hospital in serious condition. Fire investigators determined that the fire was accidental, caused by food being left burning on a stove.

The fire was declared under control at 12:18 a.m. Investigators estimated $20,000 damage to the structure and $5,000 damage to contents in the second-floor apartment where the fire began.

The American Red Cross assisted four families who live in the complex, providing blankets, snacks, water and basic hygiene supplies and assisting with temporary housing.

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