The blaze started at Anson Park Apartments before 4:30 Sunday morning. Neighbors told the Abilene Fire Department they heard a smoke alarm in a downstairs apartment. They found a man living inside who tried to escape but collapsed near the apartment's back door. He was treated on the scene, and later flown to a Lubbock burn center with severe burns.
Firefighters found the female victim's body a short time later. The family dog was also killed in the blaze. No other injuries were reported.
Most of the damage was limited to the apartment where the fire started. AFD knocked down the flames within ten minutes. Everyone else living in the building was evacuated as a precaution. Most residents were allowed to return to their homes shortly after the fire.
Fire investigators say careless smoking led to the fire. It's the second time in four days AFD was called to the same apartment to extinguish a fire caused by careless smoking. Sunday's fire involved a bed, which was extinguished before the fire could spread to other furniture in the apartment.