New Year's Eve Fire Damages Tire Store in Queens Village

TimesLedger.com - January 07, 2018

by Naeisha Rose

Fire marshals are still trying to determine the cause of a fire that broke out on a blistering cold New Year’s Eve in Queens Village.

A dozen fire trucks and 60 firefighters were sent to the Tire Express store, at 109-23 Springfield Blvd., shortly before 6 a.m. to put out a one-alarm fire at the shop, according to the FDNY press office.

The fire came three days after a fire killed 12 people in the Bronx. A child playing with the knobs on a stove started that blaze, which tore through an apartment complex, according to authorities. The tragedy prompted the FDNY to share fire education materials for children on fdnysmart.org.

The fire in Queens Village was far less severe. Two people had minor injuries in the area of the fire, a two-story building which housed the tire store on the ground floor and an apartment above, according to the FDNY. Both victims were sent to Long Island Jewish Medical Center.

The fire was contained in the tire store, the FDNY said. Smoke still billowed to the top of the building, forcing a resident of the second-floor apartment to evacuate.

While firefighters stood on the roof to put out the fire, the apartment resident sat inside her red minivan until smoke was cleared at 6:40 a.m. The resident declined to be identified, but at 7:30 a.m. said she was going back to her apartment to see what she could salvage.

Police from the 105th Precinct were at the scene to block off the road surrounding the fire in the morning.

Eight months ago, a fire in Queens Village took the lives of four relatives and a friend.

The site of that fire, a home at 112-16 208th St., had no working smoke detectors, according to Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro. That disclosure prompted town halls to be held on fire safety throughout southeast Queens in the spring.

This winter there have been fires in Queens, the Bronx and Brooklyn, resulting in members of the FDNY Fire Safety Education unit doing more outreach on social media and at pop-up workshops throughout the city.

Fire marshals were expected to post an update on the tire store fire on the FDNY alerts Twitter feed.