Brooklyn fire: Firefighters pull off dramatic rope rescue after heavy blaze in Park Slope building

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Tuesday, June 20, 2023
Firefighters perform dramatic rope rescue in Brooklyn fire
Firefighters pulled off a dramatic rope rescue early Tuesday morning in Brooklyn.

PARK SLOPE, Brooklyn (WABC) -- Firefighters pulled off a dramatic rope rescue early Tuesday morning in Brooklyn.

It happened after flames broke out inside the kitchen of an apartment in a building on 16th Street and 8th Avenue in the Park Slope neighborhood.

Citizen app video showed heavy flames shooting from the back of the building.

Firefighters arrived just after 6:22 a.m. to find a man in his 20s who somehow had shimmied from outside his fourth floor window to a neighbor's.

He had escaped the flames in his apartment but was unable to get down because his access to the building's fire escape was cut off by the fire.

Several firefighters set up a rescue operation, in which one firefighter rappelled down from the roof and grabbed the trapped resident.

Both were then lowered four stories down to the ground.

"This was a roof rope rescue, tying off to a substantial object on the roof and then moving down to the ground," said Deputy Assistant Fire Chief John Sarrocco.

Firefighter Patrick Gale is the one who grabbed the man.

"I was just doing my job. My training kicked in," said Patrick Gale, the firefighter who was lowered down and secured the victim. "Might've felt like an eternity, but it just took a couple minutes."

The victim sustained non-life-threatening injuries.

"He was happy, a little bit panicked," said Gale. "Definitely thankful. And we were good to go."

Neighbor Mario Barrocco lives on the second floor.

He told Eyewitness News this particular neighbor who was rescued worries him.

"They've come for him a lot of times, always for drugs," Barrocco said. "And they take him in for a while, and they keep letting him out."

The cause of this fire remains under investigation.

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