One person was injured in a fire early Saturday morning that heavily damaged a Defiance apartment.

The fire occurred at Garden Ridge Apartments, 1221 Ayersville Ave., apartment B5, at approximately 12:30 a.m. Saturday.

The occupant, Brian Emerling, 46, was out of the structure upon Defiance firefighters’ arrival, but had sustained injuries, according to an incident report provided by the Defiance Fire Department.

The report noted that he was taken by South Richland Fire Department to Mercy Health Defiance Hospital. He was then transferred to a Toledo hospital, according to Defiance Assistant Fire Chief Tim Bowling.

Damage was estimated at $15,000 to the building and $5,000 to the apartment’s contents, the fire report noted.

According to the report, city firefighters were dispatched to the scene at 12:40 a.m., arriving with a ladder truck and engine to find “heavy fire ... showing through the front window” of the apartment.

City firefighters were joined by their counterparts from Noble and Highland townships, who provide mutual aid on fires.

One of their tasks was to keep the fire from spreading to the other apartment units. The report noted that they were successful in keeping the fire contained.

“Once the initial fire was knocked down the apartment was ventilated and crews checked for extension in the attic area,” the report stated. “There was smoldering insulation in the attic but it was contained to (a) small section near the origin of the fire. Crews checked the adjacent apartments and attic spaces and no fire extension was noted. The building’s fire walls remained intact.”On Saturday morning, the front of the apartment was cordoned off with yellow tape and showed heavy damage to the building exterior along with the interior.

The fire’s cause was listed by city firefighters as “undetermined” while the state fire marshal’s office visited the scene Monday, according to Defiance Fire Chief Bill Wilkins. An official ruling had not been made as of Monday afternoon, he indicated.

City firefighters cleared the scene at 2:47 a.m. Saturday.

The apartment is one of six single-story apartments in the same building in the Garden Ridge complex, just east of Ayersville Avenue. It is located in the corner of a building toward the back of the complex.

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