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Updated: 6:42 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012 | Posted: 2:59 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012
SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. —
A Slippery Rock University student was forced to jump out of a second-floor window early Wednesday morning to escape a fire at her apartment building.
Authorities said the flames were reported at the Cooper Street Apartments on West Cooper Street just before 3 a.m. Wednesday.
Investigators said the downstairs apartment caught fire when something went wrong near the hot water heater. The flames and smoke quickly spread throughout the building.
Dilshani Madawala was woken up by the sound of her smoke alarm and was forced to jump out of her window after she realized she wouldn’t make it to the door.
Madawala, a foreign exchange student from Sri Lanka, wasn’t injured after jumping and falling about 12 feet, officials said.
Madawala told Channel 11’s Amy Marcinkiewicz that she’s thankful a neighbor was waiting below to catch her.
Firefighters were able to quickly evacuate the building’s other tenants and extinguish the blaze.
“It woke us up. I looked around and saw a bunch of people standing around and it looked like they lived her,” said Matt Connor, who lives near the building.
No injuries were reported, but the building suffered extensive damage.
The apartment complex has already found the students other units to move in to.
Slippery Rock University officials said they’re giving the kids a couple hundred dollars to buy items they lost in the blaze.
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