1 killed, 2 others injured in Bronx fire

Sonia Rincón Image
Monday, January 30, 2023
1 killed, 2 others injured in Bronx fire
One person was killed and two others were injured in a fire in the Bronx. Sonia Rincon has the details.

SOUNDVIEW, The Bronx (WABC) -- One person was killed and two others were injured in a fire in the Bronx.

The fire started just after 2 p.m. Sunday at the building on Evergreen Avenue in Soundview. Over a hundred firefighters rushed to the scene to battle the blaze.

The fire quickly went to two alarms and was placed under control by 3 p.m.

The fire reportedly started on the second floor, but it is unclear exactly where on the second floor the fire started.

FDNY Deputy Chief James Donlevy says the fire has been declared suspicious. Though there was no cause officially determined, as the investigation continued, neighbors say they found a lot of things suspicious about this home for years.

"I wouldn't be surprised if there was nothing up to code in that home," said Yadalis Martinez.

Martinez says she and other neighbors reported to 311 illegal dumping seemingly tolerated by the owner of the home. Months ago, there were junk piles that blocked access to the alley where neighbors park. They also noticed a lot of people lived in the home -- probably too many.

"The rooms were like, filled to the brim. And any safety concerns were not addressed. It was just filled as much as they can to just maximize how much money they can take from that home," Martinez added.

In fact, residents who escaped the fire confirm that most rented rooms, not apartments. One man who says he does have his own apartment in the back, said he had no time to grab anything when the fire broke out.

"I hear like people running, so then I come in, I try to open because we have a little door between the two buildings, so when I open, I see a lot of smoke coming, so I had to come out running too," said Ibrahima Magassouba.

Magassouba said it was crazy, and he didn't know how to feel.

"Because a lot of smoke coming, I just panicked. Because I left everything inside, I had to come out running," he said.

However, he helped other neighbors who needed to get out through a window. One woman showed Eyewitness News the cuts on her hand from the escape, but she was grateful to be alive. The Red Cross is helping her and others who couldn't go home on Sunday night.

Those who were impacted by the damage and are getting help, include a family with children next door. The owner of that building is among those who reported concerns about this building.

While most of the tenants rented rooms, neighbors had also complained about squatters in the past.

There is no word yet on the identity or the circumstances of the victim who died in the fire.

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