By Sarah Del Giallo
At approximately 3:45 a.m. a house two blocks from Ryerson campus went up in flames.
Second-year child and youth care student Sanja Mitar lives in an apartment on Gerrard Street, directly in front of the burning house at 355 George Street.
“I woke up to a really bad smell, and a woman yelling for help,” said Mitar.
She said a male voice responded, and the woman said there was a fire, and her animals were trapped.
“As soon as I heard ‘fire’, I jumped up and was super super scared. I didn’t know if the fire was in the house beside me. I felt extremely endangered,” said Mitar.
Larry Sutherland, 49, lives on the top floor of the George Street house.
“I just woke up. The fire alarm was going off,” he said. “I think [smoke] just started coming through all the vents.”
By 4:10 a.m., the street was immersed in smoke so thick, the house was barely visible from the adjacent sidewalk. About seven people stood outside, most of them residents of the building.
Police and fire crew ushered pedestrians off of the street and sectioned off George Street at Gerrard.
Around 4:40 a.m., smoke was no longer billowing from the house.