Eight people were injured in a Mesa apartment fire Thursday night, according to the Mesa Fire Department.
Martin Tapia/Special for The Republic

Eight people were injured in a Mesa apartment fire Thursday evening, including four police officers who rescued people from a burning apartment, officials said.

The Mesa Fire and Medical Department, on its Twitter account, credited the Mesa Police Department with “saving lives” in evacuating people from the apartment complex, which is located in the 1000 block of South San Jose, northwest of Southern Avenue and Dobson Road.

Mesa Deputy Fire Chief Forrest Smith said the fire broke out in a second-floor apartment about 7 p.m., and quickly was brought under control by Mesa and Tempe firefighters.

Mesa police officers arriving at the scene first ran to the apartments and rescued people from inside, “ultimately decreasing the number that could have been injured,” Smith said.

He said police checked several apartments in an effort to evacuate people.

Of the eight people injured, four were Mesa police officers who suffered smoke inhalation and were transported to a hospital. One woman who lived in the apartment that caught fire also was taken to a hospital with smoke inhalation, Smith said.

The others were treated at the scene.

Smith said it was unclear how many residents were evacuated from the burning apartment.

A video shared with by a witness shows two officers carrying one person out of the apartment and flames raging from the apartment.

Del Slivels, who lives nearby, said he was walking home when he saw smoke billowing out of the apartment complex and more than a dozen people, including children, running from the fire.

“It was burning down,” he said.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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