South Shore fire: 8 hospitalized, including baby, after flames erupt at high-rise

Emergency crews swarmed the scene of a high-rise fire in Chicago's South Shore neighborhood on Wednesday afternoon.

One hundred fifty-five Chicago firefighters and 12 ambulances were on the scene at 71st Street and Jeffery Boulevard around 4 p.m. after a fire erupted in the kitchen of second-floor unit.

Many of the residents said they were trapped on the upper floors of the building. A very long towel could be seen hanging from the 7th or 8th floor of the building. Witnesses at the scene said a child could be seen hanging out of the window waiting to be rescued.

Kids were seen wrapped in blankets and multiple people were taken away on stretchers. 

Eight people were transported to area hospitals due to injuries, including one baby who was in critical condition, the Chicago Fire Department (CFD) said. One person jumped from the 4th floor of the high-rise and is in fair condition.

"When I tell you frightening, I thought I was about to lose my life," said resident Tanesha Griggs.

Fire officials went door-to-door as heavy smoke ascended from the second floor through the 14th. They were able to get control of the fire in less than a half hour, with elevators shut down inside the building. 

Fire officials said Thursday the fire was started by unattended cooking in a second-floor unit.