1 dead, 3 injured in N.Y. apartment fire
One person died from their injuries after they fell from the sixth-floor of the burning Brooklyn apartment building
One of the injured who fell from the top floor of an apartment building during a fire in Brooklyn has succumbed to his injuries, PIX11 reported.
By Kerry Burke, Colin Mixson
New York Daily News
NEW YORK — Two men plunged from a sixth-floor apartment as they scrambled to save themselves from the smoke and flames that consumed a Brooklyn residential building Monday, according to FDNY officials.
The fire ignited in the Rockaway Parkway apartment building near Winthrop St. in Brownsville about 2 p.m., sending more than 60 firefighters and paramedics rushing to the scene, FDNY Deputy Chief Jim Carney told reporters at the scene.
Rescuers arrived to find two occupants of the burning unit had fallen more than 50 feet from the apartment’s sixth-floor window to the street moments before they arrived, and paramedics immediately began treating both victims. They were rushed to area hospitals in critical condition, Carney said.
A woman who fled from her fifth-floor apartment after spotting the fire witnessed their horrifying descent.
She said the first man to fall was clinging desperately to a sixth-floor window before the fire appeared to burn him off the windowsill, causing him to plummet toward the concrete below.
“He was holding on for dear life and his fingers were charred,” said Dy-Sylvia Ponder, 26, who lives in the unit below where the fire broke out.
His wounds were horrific, she added.
“His face was split open to the bone,” Ponder told the Daily News. “His nose was pushed inside of his head. His face hit the concrete first.”
The second man leaped from another window and managed to land on a small patch of grass between the building and the sidewalk. He was knocked unconscious by the fall, Ponder said.
“He had a long white ponytail and burns on top of his head,” Ponder recalled. “He was facedown and not moving at all.”
Firefighters managed to keep the fire contained to the apartment where it ignited, and paramedics treated two other occupants, including one who was rushed to a hospital in critical condition, according to the FDNY.
The fourth survivor did not require additional treatment, Carney said.
He noted that firefighters arrived on the scene five minutes after the initial 911 call was processed, and stated that the two jumpers may have escaped the blaze with milder injuries if they had waited for rescue.
“They took it into their own hands,” said Carney. “It would have been better probably if they did not do that, but ... they got out.”
The intensity of Monday’s fire raised suspicions among firefighters, according to Carney, though details were not immediately provided.
Neighbors said that workers were busy renovating the floors in the sixth-floor unit when an explosion occurred and the fire broke out.
“There were two guys doing the floors. They were renovating the apartment and boom, there was an explosion,” said Ivy Gonzalez, 64, who lives on the sixth floor of the building.
The fire marshal will investigate and determine the cause of the blaze, Carney said.