Eight FDNY firefighters and two civilians suffered minor injuries in a five-alarm fire in Manhattan early Saturday.
An hour before the massive fire was discovered, firefighters had investigated an odor of smoke on the sixth floor. They found nothing, and left, CBS2 reported.
“They investigated, they didn’t find anything. They didn’t break or move anything, they just turned off the breaker,” said Yahaira Paulina, president of the tenant’s association. “I think if they had done better due diligence at the first try, then possibly it wouldn’t have had an hour to spread the way it spread.”
Families grabbed what they could before making a quick escape.
“We have a sound machine on when we sleep and so it wasn’t until like 20 minutes after everything started. I smelled smoke and I opened the door and saw firefighters running down our hallway, and I got my husband up and got our cats into their carriers, and got our backpacks on and got out,” one woman said.
“Fire damage is limited to that top floor but of course we use a lot of water to put out these fires and there will be water damage throughout,” FDNY Chief of Department John Hodgens told reporters.