NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - More than a dozen residents called 911 Friday after seeing a North Charleston apartment burst into flames and a desperate mother toss her burned child out the window to safety before jumping out herself.
"They just threw the baby out the window and a lady just jumped," one caller told a 911 dispatch operator.
A neighbor caught the child after seeing the mother hanging the child out the window with the apartment quickly burning. The neighbor, Reginald Curry, then ran into the apartment, kicked in the apartment door and grabbed the second child off the couch. Finally, the mother jumped out the window to escape the flames.
Authorities released several 911 calls Monday that describe the chaotic situation.
"Oh my god," a caller said. "The baby's not breathing ma'am. Hurry!"
The fire broke out around noon Friday at Noisette Creek Apartments on Buist Avenue.
"The house is on fire," one of the callers told the dispatch operator. "The kids and their mother is burnt [sic]."
Witnesses said they could see flames and heavy thick black smoke as the fire spread quickly.
"It's already spreading, it's spreading all across the apartment," a caller said. "They're trying to make sure there's nobody else in the apartment building."
One caller held one of the two badly burned children in her arms, trying to help the child breathe before EMS arrived.
"I have a child right here that was in a fire, I think smoke inhalation," the caller said. "An ambulance is on the way. He's not breathing and responding really well. I need to know what to do."
"Ok ma'am, as you do know we have EMS on the way," the dispatcher said.
"I know. Is there anything I can do while we wait for them to get here?" the caller asked.
The fire heavily damaged two of the eight units in the apartment building. The two children were taken to MUSC for their injuries and the mother was flown to the Augusta Burn Center.
"Everybody's out, but they need help," another caller said. "They're burnt bad. They need help."
The Red Cross is assisting 13 residents affected by the fire. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.