Smoking, Broken Fire Alarm Led to Queens Blaze that Killed 12-Year-Old Boy

NY Daily News - December 05, 2017

by LAURA DIMON

Smoking — combined with a defunct smoke alarm — caused the tragic Queens fire that killed a 12-year-old boy, the FDNY said.

Thomas Curley died from smoke inhalation three hours after the accidental blaze erupted in the apartment building on Ocean Promenade near Beach 123rd St. in Rockaway Park around 3:05 a.m. Sunday, according to officials. He was rushed to Nassau Community Medical Center, but could not be saved.

"Per FDNY Fire Marshals: Cause of this morning's fatal all-hands fire at 122-20 Ocean Promenade QNS was accidental, smoking. Smoke alarm not operational," read a Sunday night tweet from the FDNY.

Thomas' heartbroken neighbors described the boy as good-natured and said he played the trumpet at Scholars' Academy. "He's a well-mannered, good kid from a good family," said Justin Martin, 33. "If I ever had a son, I'd want him to be just like that."