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Five people died Sunday after a fire broke out at a senior-living apartment building in the San Antonio suburb of Castle Hills, authorities said.
Ten other residents of the Wedgwood Apartments remained hospitalized and others were unaccounted for Sunday evening, according to Bexar County Fire Marshal spokeswoman Laura Jesse. A total of 150 firefighters from San Antonio and six other fire departments responded to the blaze, which was reported shortly after 6 a.m., San Antonio Fire Department spokesman Christian Bove said.
The cause of the three-alarm fire at the 11-story high-rise is under investigation, but it appears to have originated on the third floor, Jesse said. The names of those killed in the fire have not been released.
"After looking at the floors, it's amazing we did not have more loss of life," San Antonio Fire Chief Charles Hood said at a news conference, adding that the smoke and fire were "communicated" throughout the building. He also said the building's third floor was gutted and the doors were charred.
About 150 residents were taken by city buses to a local high school, and some family members waited at a makeshift shelter in the cafeteria for word of their loved ones.
A witness told NBC station WOAI that many residents have mobility issues, and some desperately tried to escape before firefighters saved them. "There were some in the third floor who were trying to break the windows and they couldn't," Wedgwood resident Tony Escamilla said.