Some unattended burning candles in a basement bedroom have been ruled as the cause of a fire at an apartment house at Broadway and Main Street Wednesday afternoon.
Assistant Winona Fire Chief Jim Multhaup said a renter of the apartment inadvertantly left the candles burning. The fire has been also ruled as accidental.
Multhaup said one occupant was in the five-apartment, three-story building at the time of the fire. The building housed 16 students. The Red Cross says the residents were mostly members of the Winona State University football team who were attending practice.
Multhaup credited a cable installer who was working at the apartment house for noticing the fire and knocking on doors to notify occupants.
Multhaup said the occupants will be living somewhere else for a time until repairs can be made. Winona State University is providing housing for some of the students while others are staying with friends or teammates.
Firefighters were on the scene from about 3:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m Wednesday..