Power strip blamed for Bronx fire

January 6, 2009 3:08:51 PM PST
An overloaded power strip sparked a second-alarm fire that tore through through a strip of businesses in the City Island section of the Bronx early Tuesday. The electrical fire appears to have started have started in a closed bar, the Island Pub, just before 4 a.m., and spread to the other businesses on City Island Avenue.

Heavy flames shot through the roof, forcing firefighters to battle the blaze from the outside.

Authorities say nearly a dozen people were injured, none seriously. They were rushed to Jacobi Medical Center. A cat and dog were killed in the flames.

Fire marshals determined that the power strip sparked the blaze.

The FDNY recently announced budget-cutting plans to cut staffing in half for City Island's lone firehouse during the overnight hours.

Under the plan, Ladder 53 would be closed between 6 p.m. and 9 a.m. daily. Critics claim the ladder company - the only one on City Island - should stay open 24 hours a day.

FDNY officials respond that Engine 70 - which shares Ladder 53's firehouse - will remain staffed overnight.

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