DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The City of Dallas plans to keep paying for hotel rooms for residents displaced by a gas explosion at their apartment complex last week.
The blast at Highland Hills Apartments injured four firefighters and four others Wednesday.
“It was like something out of a movie,” said resident Savannah Garth. “Just seeing the smoke and the fire and the building collapsing. It was just a lot.”
Hundreds of frustrated residents have been living in limbo ever since. There’s been no hot water or gas at the apartment complex since the explosion.
“As of right now, it’s just day by day,” said Daniel Aguilar, one of the nearly 300 people now temporarily living out of Dallas hotels. “Making sure my family is supplied as much as I can, while trying to maintain work at the same time.”
Some were told they’d have to leave the hotels by Monday, but the City of Dallas says it will pay to extend their stays through at least Wednesday.
“We’re not going to put no resident on the street,” said Tennell Atkins, a member of the Dallas City Council. “We’re not going to do that. It’s insane. That’s insane. We’re not going to do that.”
The property owner still has to go unit-by-unit to make sure every apartment is safe. It’s unclear how long repairs will take or when the gas will be turned on.
Some residents say even if management gives the all clear to move back in, they won’t ever feel comfortable at the Highland Hills Apartments again.
“I’m not going to play Russian Roulette with my kids’ life,” said Ashley King, one of the nearly 300 people now living day-to-day out of Dallas hotels. “It’s not worth it. I really would rather live in my car than go back there.”
Investigators are still working to figure out what caused the explosion.
The city says the three injured firefighters who are still in the hospital are now talking, but have a long road ahead of them.
The property management did meet with some of the residents staying at one of the hotels today to try to answer their questions, but the apartment complex and the company that owns the property did not respond to CBS 11 News’ request for comment.