NY Post - February 15, 2011by ERIN CALABRESE
A dozen firefighters and nine residents were injured when a fast-moving, three-alarm blaze gutted four houses on a Queens block about 4:25 p.m. today.
FDNY Deputy Chief Charles Clarke of Division 13 said the fire first blew out the rear windows on adjoining homes from 22504 to 22510 Mentone Ave.
"Once he windows failed, the wind pushed the fire through the buildings and we had several members burned,'' Clarke said.
Five firefighters were transported to the burn unit at Cornell University Medical Center in Manhattan with first- and second-degree facial burns. Nine residents suffered minor injuries and were transported to local hospitals.
The fire was knocked down shortly after 6 p.m., leaving at least four families without a place to stay.
Resident Karina Baez, 25, said she was home with her grandfather, a diabetic and amputee, when a neighbor banged on her door.
"He yelled, 'My house is on fire! Get out!''' she said.
"It was scary because my grandfathers really sick, but my neighbors helped me get him out."
Mysteriously, a body was found in one of the homes adjacent to those burned as firefighters evacuated the block. It was decomposed, and it was unclear if foul play was involved. Police are investigating.
Clarke said the cause of the fire remains under investigation.