DOWNTOWN: Fire rips through East Village hotel, injuring seven

(CNS) – Seven people were injured early Monday while escaping a burning East Village residential hotel, in several cases getting out by leaping from a second-floor window.

The blaze at Hotel Heritage in the 500 block of Ninth Avenue erupted about 2:45 a.m., according to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department. It took crews about 20 minutes to subdue the flames, SDFRD spokesman Maurice Luque said.

Medics took the injured — including three who jumped out an upstairs window to get away from the fire and smoke — to UCSD Medical Center and Scripps Mercy Hospital with smoke inhalation and leg injuries. One was admitted in serious condition, and the others were treated for minor to moderate trauma, Luque said.

Investigators determined that the blaze started in a second-floor room and was accidental in origin, though the precise cause remained unknown in the late afternoon.

The monetary losses were set at $1 million to the structure and $350,000 to contents. Damage to the three-story building was extensive enough that it might wind up deemed a total loss, according to Luque.

The American Red Cross was called in to help 14 residents secure emergency lodging. Other displaced tenants were able to make their own housing arrangements, the spokesman said.

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