Fire destroys Salisbury apartment, no injuries reported

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, March 8, 2023

SALISBURY — A fire destroyed an apartment in Salisbury on Monday night. The tenant, who was asleep inside, made it out in the knick of time.
The fire also damaged other units in the complex, which is located at 1424 Bringle Ferry Road.

No injuries occurred, but the damage reportedly impacted multiple units. For the man in apartment 6, Warren Simpson, it was a complete loss.
Many of the units in the complex, including Simpson’s, are studio-style apartments. Simpson was asleep in his apartment shortly after 8 p.m. when the fire reportedly broke out near his stove. He indicated that the smell and smoke stirred him from his slumber and that he was not cooking anything at that time.

“I came out quick,” Simpson said.

Simpson wasted few of his precious seconds to get out, taking only enough time to grab his cell phone. Everything else was destroyed. On Tuesday, he was still wearing the same clothes that he had on when the fire started.

He lamented that he was unable to save any of the photographs of his family before the blaze consumed the apartment. Having had a day to process what happened, he remarked that he had felt a series of emotions ranging from anger, frustration and gratitude.

Above all, he is relieved to have made it out with his life. Simpson indicated that he would be able to stay with family in the meantime until he figured out what else he would do. There is at least one available unit at the apartment complex. Simpson said he would like to stay there if he could because of the neighbors’ rapport with each other.

Dwayne Brown, who lives a few doors down, added, “We are like a family here.”

Brown was home at the time, too.

“It was scary,” Brown said. “I have seen fires, but I have never seen one that big. The way it expanded, you can really see the extent of the damage.”
Brown is fearful that it could happen again.

“These apartments are a fire hazard,” Brown said. “There is only one way out and one way in.”

For the man in the apartment directly next door to the one that sustained the most damage, it almost became a more dire situation. That neighbor, Curtis Ray Black, was also in bed when the fire broke out. As he moved to leave, he realized that the door was stuck.

“The fire department had to knock it open,” Black said.

The cause for the door’s failure remains unclear, but Black is relieved the fire department showed up when they did.