Destructive Fire Under Investigation

North Knoxville (WVLT) - Fire crews are investigating a fire that destroyed a home where two families lived in North Knoxville.

Knoxville Fire crews responded to the fire on Cornelia Street at about 2:00 a.m. to find the home up in flames.

They say the families living in the house's two apartments were all able to get out safely and are now getting help from the American Red Cross.

A dog died in the fire.

Captain Darrell Whitaker with the Knoxville Fire Department says fire detectors saved their lives.

"During the day you're going to smell the smoke a lot of times before the smoke alarm will go off. But at nigh, it it's critical because it will save lives there's no doubt about it," says Whitaker.

Whitaker says they aren't sure how the fire began and are still trying to determine where it started.

"They don't know exactly the point of origin and they don't know if it started inside or outside of the house," says Whitaker.

Whitaker says the fire was very dangerous and difficult to fight because it was an older home and the flames spread into the attic.

Fire crews made sure to be cautious to stay hydrated.

No firefighter was hurt.

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