Published Monday, April 28, 2014 | 1:40 p.m.
Updated Monday, April 28, 2014 | 2:54 p.m.
Residents of an apartment that caught fire this morning tried to find an extinguisher, but all of the fire-extinguisher cabinets they checked at the complex were empty, Las Vegas Fire & Rescue officials said.
The Las Vegas fire marshal is investigating reports of missing extinguishers at the Crossings at Lake Mead and plans to conduct a complete inspection of the complex on Tuesday, fire department spokesman Tim Szymanski said.
William Rabago, property manager at the complex at 1901 N. Jones Blvd., said he also was looking into reports of missing extinguishers.
“They’ve been known to be taken before,” said Rabago, who said he was not informed of the missing extinguishers until after the fire.
One occupant of the apartment was taken to a hospital with minor smoke inhalation after the blaze, which was reported about 10 a.m., Szymanski said.
When firefighters arrived, heavy flames and smoke were coming from the door and window of a downstairs unit at the two-story building, Szymanski said. The fire, which gutted most of the apartment and caused about $35,000 damage, was quickly brought under control and contained to the single unit, he said.
The two occupants told fire investigators that the water heater had been making strange noises and that smoke started coming from the closet where it is mounted, Szymanski said.
Investigators found combustible items stored in the closet, but the cause of the fire is under investigation, he said.