About 60 firefighters responded to a fire in a second-floor apartment at 185 West End Avenue (69th street) on Friday night around 9:15 p.m. No one was injured in the blaze and it was under control by 10:06, FDNY tells us.
A resident of the building told a dramatic tale of firefighters breaking down doors in the building as they sought to put it out.
“Fire was on 2nd floor. It seems a couple went out to walk dog, left candle burning, wind blew curtain into candle. I live on 3rd floor of this big building , 30 or so stories high. I heard huge commotion in my hall. Firemen were hacking at door of an apt. on my floor. I screamed: “I have the keys! The people are away. I’m taking care of their cat this weekend.”
Firemen said: too late. They hacked until they broke down door. This apt. wasn’t the source of fire. They then ran down one flight.
Seems they broke down 5 doors all together, including the one where the fire was, on 2nd floor. Fire extinguished.
Smoke filled my hallway, 3rd floor. We couldn’t go down, were sent back into our apts.
As soon as firemen let me, I went out into hall again. Cops helped me search for the cat in apt. where they broke door on my floor (3rd). After one hour of a number of cops, plus I and another neighbor searching, pulling out things all over the place, a cop found cat hiding under a cluttered area, under computer table. Thank goodness! On my watch, I didn’t want that cat lost ! Police were exceptionally nice, considerate of me, neighbors, cat. I was in touch with the cat owners, in Montauk for weekend.
Downstairs, it looked like every fire truck in NYC was in front of bldg. Many neighbors had congregated in lobby, some perhaps before the smoke got so bad. Others returning home, and couldn’t get up to apts.
Staff members were called into the bldg. from wherever they were. One came from Yankee Stadium with his son. They were all terrific, helping out. Handymen were securing all doors with new temporary locks. A night to remember!”
Thanks to Daniel for the photo.