3 children jump from burning apartment in Santa Maria

SANTA MARIA, Calif. (KFSN) -- Three children are safe after jumping from the second story of a burning apartment in Southern California.

Julian, Brian and Juan Mendoza were inside their grandmother's Santa Maria apartment when the unit next door caught fire. The flames trapped them inside, so they were forced to go out onto the balcony. Santa Maria officers arrived at the scene before firefighters and urged the children to jump.

Julian says he could feel the heat from the fire and was the first to take the leap. "I was like that was going to be so crazy," he said.

"I was so scared to fall down. What if no one was there to rescue? Then I'd be flat as a flapjack," Juan said.

Officers caught the boys before they hit the ground. Authorities say they're thankful neighbors alerted them that a family was inside.

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