ROY -- One tenant had time to grab two parakeets but nothing else, as fire swept through the Herfordshire Apartments, 4642 S. 1900 West.
"It was that fast," said Kevin Gilmore, 38. "I couldn't grab anything more."
Firefighters are still on the scene of the fire that, at its height, threw off heavy columns of black smoke that were visible for miles.
There are 12 apartments in the building, and officials said all residents are accounted for.
Jordan Leyba said she and her fiance, Jake Sanders, heard banging noises and thought neighbors were just being loud.
They looked out a window and saw the shadow of flames on the ground. They went outside and realized the fire was in their building.
"As soon as we opened the door, you could smell it, instantly," she said.
Leyba said she ran back in and had time to just grab her shoes and purse.
Leyba said she and Sanders planned to move to North Ogden this weekend.
Portions of 1900 West remain closed.
Roy Police Sgt. Danny Hammon said all residents have been contacted.
He classified the fire as a two-alarm blaze.
Hammon said fire units from Roy, Riverdale, South Ogden, Ogden and Weber Fire District have equipment and personnel on the scene.