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Blaze guts Norcross apartments

Photo by Tori Boone

Photo by Tori Boone

NORCROSS -- Freezing temperatures made conditions icy for swarms of firefighters working to quell a Sunday morning fire that could cost 33 Norcross residents their homes.

Investigators believe the 10:21 a.m. blaze could have been caused by electrical wiring at the Sinclair Apartments on Park Colony Drive.

No injuries have been reported, and all residents are accounted for, but 33 people -- among them nine children -- have been displaced from eight units that suffered damage, said Fire Department spokesman Capt. Thomas Rutledge.

The American Red Cross and apartment managers are providing housing assistance.

A crew of 45 firefighters controlled the two-alarm blaze in about an hour. Below-average temps froze water on ladder rungs, firefighter clothing and hose connections, Rutledge said.

"The cold weather posed a bit of a challenge," he said.

Fire investigators believe the blaze started in a void space between ground-floor apartments, spreading through the floor and wall systems to other parts of the building.

The initial 911 caller reported flames breaking through the ceiling of a ground-floor bathroom, Rutledge said.

Police had evacuated the building before fire crews arrived, he said.