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Over 1,000 Displaced From 2-Alarm Electrical Fire In Bethesda Apt. Complex

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Over 1,000 people have been displaced after a two-alarm electrical fire broke out at a Bethesda apartment building, according to Montgomery County Fire.

Montgomery County Fire says at around 9 a.m. Saturday morning they received calls for a transformer fire in a parking garage with smoke into a building at Promenade Towers on Pooks Hill Road in Bethesda.

Multiple units were called to assist with evacuation with reports. They say seven people were taken to the hospital -- six occupants for smoke inhalation and a firefighter for heat exhaustion. There were also 11 people who were taken to the hospital for pre-existing medical conditions.

Fire investigators say both apartment buildings were initially evacuated, but the fire damage affected only the North Tower building. They estimate damage from the fire at approximately $1 million dollars.

Fire officials say 550 units with about 1,100 to 1,500 people were displaced due to damage in the North Tower Building. Residents in the South Tower building were allowed back in.

Fire officials say the building is an 18-story high rise with mixed occupants including young families with children, and elderly with medical conditions.

Montgomery County Fire says there were reports of smoke throughout the building and because of the transformer outage the North Tower apartment building is without power.

The Red Cross and 24-hour emergency officials came to the scene to help displaced residents.

Montgomery County Fire says crews will remain on-scene through this evening.

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