Firefighters Continue to Recover from Injuries

7 Online - December 23, 2011

by N.J. Burkett

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Two firefighters injured in a fire in Brooklyn earlier this week continue to recover from their injuries. The hospital and their families gave an update on how they are doing.

"We just ask everybody to keep Robert in your thoughts and prayers," said Doug Wiedmann, firefighter's brother.

Doug Wiedmann says his brother is strong. And 32-year-old Robert Wiedmann is using every ounce of it.

He was burned over 50% of his body when a fireball burst through the upper floor of a brownstone in Crown Heights.

He was rescued by his colleagues-desperate to save his life-after a mayday call sent them scrambling.

Firefighter: "mayday right now!"

Dispatcher: "10-4."

Firefighter: "We need EMS forthwith!"

Dispatcher: "10-4. Units responding into the second alarm box 920, be advised we have a 'mayday' at this time."

There were reports that someone was trapped and Wiedmann and firefighter James Gersbeck were both badly burned during the search.

What they did not know is that the tenants were not home at the time of the fire.

His doctors say Wiedmann's burns were far more severe.

"It takes about a year for the wounds to heal up from the inside, and so we expect that he would need extensive therapy, not inpatient necessarily the whole time, but rehab therapy for up to a year. I anticipate that at this point he will be getting back to work," said Dr. Roger Yurt, of New York Hospital Weill-Cornell Medical Center.

Doug Wiedmann says his brother can communicate and is determined to make a full-recovery.

"He's more worried about us than he is about himself, so he's comfortable, and he's more worried about his family and everybody in his firehouse, that's what he's concerned with right now," Wiedmann said.