Man, woman killed in fire that broke out in Bronx apartment building

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Wednesday, June 14, 2023
Man, woman killed in fire that broke out in Bronx apartment building
Firefighters worked to put out a large fire that burned through an apartment building in the Bronx.

WAKEFIELD, the Bronx (WABC) -- Two people who lived in the same apartment are dead are a fire broke out in a Bronx building.

Officials say the blaze began at around 5:30 a.m. Wednesday on the top floor of a five-story building. The building is located near the intersection of East 242nd Street and Barnes Avenue.

A 30-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene and a woman died at the hospital, authorities said. The identities of the victims have not been released.

Five firefighters were checked out at the scene, authorities said.

The damage is still keeping people out of more than two dozen apartments and the Bronx borough president said the shortage of emergency shelter in the Bronx because of the asylum seeker crisis should not have to make life even harder for these residents.

"We don't want them in another borough or another county, because people work, they have children in school, they have obligations," said Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson.

Eyewitness News spoke with neighbors who were not alerted by smoke detectors, but they heard the crackle of fire and the sounds of debris falling to the ground and smelled smoke.

"I took the dog, tried to take my wallet, my phone, ran downstairs started screaming 'fire, fire, fire,' we came outside and we saw that the entire, almost the entire fifth floor was flames all over," said resident Luis Reyes.

They didn't know the fire was deadly or even how serious it was because it was mostly above them on the fifth floor, which is the top floor. The fire spread sideways in the space just under the roof.

"Fire tends to burn freely there because there is not many impediments to stop it, it went a third alarm fire," said FDNY Deputy Chief Ken Scanlon.

Neighbors said there have been fires at the building before, but in the past everyone survived -- including a serious fire a few years ago.

"Because we've been through this before, you just automatically jump up," said resident Ena Griffin. "And I grabbed my son, and I tell him to come, let's was on this side, and it was a gas leak and we didn't have gas for a year."

Officials say the Red Cross is at the scene assisting displaced families.

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