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Submitted by Meghan Torjussen on Mon, 09/10/2007 - 9:33pm.

WILMINGTON -- At least a dozen apartments were ruined by a fire that tore through a Wilmington complex this afternoon. Some residents of Abbott's Run say the fire ruined practically everything they had. Without renter's insurance, many are left wondering how to replace what the blaze destroyed. "Furniture, TVs, computers everything that I own almost clothing," Tony Moran, who's apartment destroyed by the fire, said. Residents of Abbot's Run watched the Wilmington Fire Department attempt to smother the flames that broke out around three-thirty Monday afternoon. Many of the people who live there are college students and those who were inside their apartments when the fire began to burn say they had little warning. "We didn't smell anything, we didn't hear anything, no alarms were going off, no sprinklers we didn't think it was that serious until someone opened the door and it was pitch black," Carol Anne Watts and Elaine Girelli said. Residents say Fire officials told them cigarette butts thrown into a pile of woodchips caused the blaze. Wilmington fire fighters would only confirm a brush fire ignited the apartments. In total six were ruined and 12 had to be evacuated. "I'm probably just going to have to stay around with some friends for a while and find a new place to live," Tony Moran said. It took fire fighters nearly four hours to put out the flames. People who live in Abbot's Run say the complex will not pay to replace what was ruined. They say it's important to protect yourself with renter's insurance. "Don't think this can't happen to you because I thought it couldn't," Elaine Girelli said. The Wilmington Fire Department says the cause is still under investigation. Investigators also say Abbot's Run made arrangements for displaced residents to stay at other apartments owned by management. No one was hurt in the fire.

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