3 firefighters hurt as blaze in the Bronx rips through strip of businesses

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Sunday, June 23, 2024
Bronx businesses destroyed in massive fire
Sonia Rincon has the latest on the fire in the Melrose section of the Bronx.

MELROSE, Bronx (WABC) -- A fire ripped through a strip of businesses in the Bronx and at least three firefighters were treated for injuries.

The blaze broke out on Third Avenue on a strip that houses Dunkin Donuts and several other businesses.

It is unclear where the fire started.

The flames tore through at least five other locations on the block, including a Chinese food restaurant, a smoke shop, a furniture store, a 99 Cent store, a custom clothing store called Holland Textiles.

"Our store was our home," said Holland Textiles owner Djounedou Titikpina. "It was our life. It was our place to be. And our place to enjoy our customers."

The row of shops affected is just outside the Third Avenue Business Improvement District, and the BID is helping them anyway with advice on how to move forward.

"So hopefully these businesses, which is required, have the appropriate insurance to cover them in situations like this and are filing a claim," added Third Avenue BID's Pedro Suarez. "Secondarily, I know that the city works with financial institutions and provides low-interest loans in emergency situations like this."

Poor air quality conditions due to Thursday's heat have been compounded in the Melrose area as smoke from the doused flames billowed into the neighborhood.

"Given the weather today with the humidity, the smoke is not lifting. We advise all the residents all the residents in the area to keep their window closed. We advise all the residents in the area to keep their windows closed," FDNY Assistant Chief Kevin Brennan said.

At least three firefighters suffered minor injuries.

EMS crews were also on the scene. Division Chief Mark Bonilla said fire and smoke conditions could have been far worse if temperatures were warmer.

"These are some of the things that obviously our members go through while battling these types of fires. We have three injured firefighters. Minor injuries, they were treated and will be transported to area hospitals. We had over 45 EMS personnel on the scene. We usually rotate the members out, due to the extreme conditions," he said.

READ MORE: Dangerous heat wave forecast for New York City, Tri-State area

Excessive heat conditions contributed to about 350 deaths in New York last year.


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