Updated: Families Displaced in Carlton Motel Blaze
Posted at: 12/24/2012 10:19 AM
| Updated at: 12/25/2012 11:36 PM
By: Dayna Landgrebe and Laurie Stribling
A major fire forced eight residents to evacuate the Royal Pines Motel in Carlton on Christmas Eve.
According to the Carlton County Sheriff's Office, a fire started at the motel around 8:40 p.m. on Monday night at 1508 County Road 61 in Carlton. There were no injuries.
Authorities said they don't know a cause as of yet, but the case is under investigation. An Eyewitness News crew on the scene said much of the motel was engulfed in flames as multiple agencies and tankers responded, trying to dampen the blaze.
Traffic was bottle-necking near Interstate-35 and Highway 210. The Minnesota State Patrol was called to try and disperse some of the back-ups.
Two families were living at the motel when it caught fire. One of them was Darin and Amy Bell who also worked there, and lost everything in the blaze.
"We're thankful to be alive; we're upbeat," Darin said. "One day at a time, we'll take it step by step today."
Darin said the fire spread quickly.
"It was pretty bad," Darin said. "Worst I've ever seen. It was like it really wasn't happening."
While the Bells lost all their belongings, they were also concerned for the family that owned the motel. They also lived in the building and just welcomed a baby boy two days ago.
"It was sad," Darin said. "These are good people. It was sad to see this happen to them. They've helped us out a lot. Why this has to happen to them? I don't know with their new baby."
The Red Cross was with the Bells today helping out with immediate needs, but donations are being accepted at the Golden Gate Motel in Scanlon. That is where people displaced by the fire will be staying.
Other people affected include several Sappi Paper Mill Workers who were staying at the motel, but gone for the holiday.