Overnight Apartment Fire in Bryan

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An overnight structure fire at the Shamrock Villiage Apartments in Bryan kept fire fighters busy.

The apartment complex located in the 500 block of Wayside was big enough that traffic had to be blocked on Texas Avenue for some time.

The fire broke out about 3:15 a.m.

Donald Nickerson was in his downstairs apartment making a sandwich, when he heard yelling and repeated knocks on his door.

"At first, you know, I didn't think there was that much to it," Nickerson said. "Then I went up and opened the door and everything was burning, falling over the balcony."

When he looked up, Nickerson saw the apartment directly above his on fire.

"It was fully engulfed by the time I got out the door," Nickerson said.

Four doors down from the fire, Timothy Cheney had settled into his chair and was watching television when pounding at his door and screams startled him.

"I ran out in shorts. Cheney said. "It's kind of chilly out here no shoes, nothing."

Only 24 hours after moving in, Cheney's belongings are damaged by smoke and soot.

"I moved in here yesterday and everything is like dirty," Cheney said.

Bryan Fire Marshal Marc McFeron says the fire started in an one upstair unit.

"A lady was trying to light an oil lamp and she had trouble with the oil lamp," McFeron said. "It ignited some clothing and she attempted to put it out."

The resident's attempt was unsuccessful and the fire spread to the apartment next door through the attic.

Firefighters on scence were able to contain the fire damage to the two units which are now just charred shells.

Ten units in all were affected by the fire, eight of which are received some type of smoke or water damage.

Twenty residents who lived in that one building will be spending the Wednesday night somewhere else.

Currently, the Red Cross is helping residents those residents.

Fire officials say it will be some time before their apartments can be home again.