High Rise Fire Kills Woman; Teen Jumps - NBC 10 Philadelphia

High Rise Fire Kills Woman; Teen Jumps

People screamed and ran for their lives once they discovered this time, there really was a fire.

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    More than 400 people live in the Norris Apartments. The Red Cross was working Wednesday morning to help fire victims find shelter and financial aid.

    It's classic Pavlov conditioning. When the fire alarms screeched inside a local high rise Wednesday morning, a lot of people did absolutely nothing.

    Why? Because it happens all the time! People smoke in the hallways and that sets off the fire alarms, according to Kirk Dorn with the Philadelphia Housing Authority.

    But this time, it was the real deal and when people inside the Norris Apartments finally realized that thick smoke in the hallway was life threatening, they went from passive to panicked.

    People were screaming and running frantically to get out of the North Philly high rise alive.

    One teenager jumped to survive.

    One woman died.

    She was 24 and lived next door to the 3rd floor apartment where the fire started.

    The fire alarms went off around 4:30am at the complex on N. 11th Street.

    Along with the 15 year old who jumped, a total of 16 people were taken to local hospitals. Most suffered from smoke inhalation.

    Most of the people evacuated early in the day were allowed back home by early afternoon.

    The fire in the Norris Apartments displaced nine families. The Red Cross and PHA was working to find temporary shelter and financial aid for more than 30 people.

    With all the chaos the hallway smoking issue caused, it's no shock that "careless smoking" started the fire.