Yonkers fire investigators want to look at surveillance

A look at a wood frame multi-family home destroyed by fire in Yonkers. (WABC)

January 31, 2012 1:06:52 PM PST
Firefighters say the fire that torched a wood frame home and left dozens homeless in Yonkers may not have been accidental.

An investigation is underway and the focus is on children playing with fire.

The investigation into this fire is just beginning.

"It is going to take a little while to figure this out," said Capt. Paul Vasely, Yonkers Fire Investigations.

The dangerous condition of the building poses serious risks to investigators wanting to probe deeper into the building looking for a cause.

They are tracking one important lead.

"We have yet to interview the letter carrier. She's claiming that she did see kids, whether they were coming home from school. She did claim to see them with lit papers," Vasely said.

Fire officials believe it could have gotten a head start moving quickly up into the walls in the back of the building.

Floor by floor it was being consumed by the raging inferno fire fighters attacking it from all sides.

All of the residents fled to safety many losing everything, like Jacquline Riley.

"You will never replace the sentimental valuables, your kids' pictures and things like that, but everything else comes into play," Riley said.

Zuhair Said, the building owner poured his time and money into his building and was always there for his tenants.

"The tenants, when they come down they greet me because I always do the work, and how this happens, it is just a loss," Said commented.

It's a loss that now has fire investigators looking at all leads.

"We have surveillance cameras on a home down below the building involved. We're going to talk to the owner and see if we can get a look at those tapes," Vasely said.

It could be a look at a possibly valuable clue.

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