Cause of New York City Fire that Killed 12, Including 4 Children, Revealed

A residential fire broke out in a Bronx apartment building in New York City Thursday night and killed 12 people, including four children.

As of Friday morning, Mayor Bill de Blasio believes that a young child playing with a stove was likely the cause of the fire.

“What we think at this point is unfortunately it emanated from an accident — a young child playing with a stove on the first floor,” he said on WNYC Radio, according to the New York Post.

“Tonight here in the Bronx, families have been torn apart,” de Blasio told reporters, according to Fox News.

The children who died were girls ages 1, 2 and 7, and an unidentified boy. Others are still in the hospital “fighting for their lives” according to de Blasio.

New York City Alerts, which describes itself as an unofficial group of New York City reporters who tweet about news in the city, shared what it called “the official statement” on the fire.

“Based of FDNY’s quick response, based on the information we have now … at least 12 people were rescued and will survive,” de Blasio told the New York Post. First responders got to the scene about three minutes after the first report came in.

Just before 7 p.m., the fire started on the first floor of the building and quickly engulfed the other floors. The flames moved so fast that some people didn’t make it out of their apartments.

“It spread rapidly upward … accidental from everything we can see,” the mayor explained, according to the New York Post.

The fire was the worst in the city since a social club fire in 1990 where 87 people were killed. Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said this blaze was “historic in its magnitude,” according to The Associated Press.

“Our hearts go out to every person who lost a loved one here and everyone who is fighting for their lives,” Nigro said.

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Thierno Diallo who lives in a ground floor apartment was asleep when the fire broke out.

“I was in my bed sleeping … someonebody knock on the door shouting, ‘We have a fire in the building. Get out! Get out!” Diallo recalled to the Post.

Over 170 firefighters fought the flames in temperatures as low as 15 degrees.

The 20-unit building was located near the Bronx Zoo, and was not new enough to have the required sprinkler systems and interior steel construction for modern day fireproofing.

City records show that the building had at least one open violation of a defective carbon monoxide detector and a faulty smoke detector on the first floor, the Post reported.

This post was last modified on March 15, 2018, 3:01 pm