One man dies in overnight fire in Connersville apartment

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One man died and two firefighters were injured in an overnight fire at the Turtle Creek Apartments at 3600 Western Avenue on the north side of Connersville. 

Chief Troy Tipton told Eyewitness News the victim was found "collapsed in the hallway" outside his second floor apartment.

Two firefighters were treated and released - one for smoke inhalation and the other for a fall from a ladder.

Chief Tipton said the cause is under investigation, but it appears to be accidental. The victim was a smoker, and candles were found in his apartment. Smoke detectors in the building were working.  Tipton said CFD was notified by several alarms around 11:15 p.m. and arrived quickly.

The fire was contained to the victim's apartment and the unit directly above it.  Tipton said the fire did not break through the roof of the building.

But one of the victim's neighbors, Chris Kitzke, told Eyewitness News that the smoke in the hallway was so thick that he contemplated jumping off his balcony to get out of the building.  He eventually found his way out through the hallway to safety.

Other residents were evacuated from the wing where the fire started, but were allowed to return to their apartments after several hours, according to Tipton.

The victim has not been identified pending notification of relatives.

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