Three Injured in Fiery Brooklyn Home Explosion

NY Post - October 01, 2019

by Daniel Cassady, Lorena Mongelli and Natalie Musumeci

A fiery explosion rocked a Brooklyn home Monday, leaving three people injured, FDNY officials said.

The blast went off in the basement of a two-story building on Friel Place in the Prospect Park South neighborhood at around 1:20 p.m., causing the building to partially collapse, officials and witnesses said.

Two of the victims suffered minor injuries and one was seriously injured, but it was not life-threatening, according to the FDNY.

The injured, who were seen being taken away on stretchers, were brought by medics to a local hospital.

“I was so scared. I heard a very loud noise,” said next-door neighbor Sumaiya Sumi, 18.

Sumi said that when she heard the blast she ran out of her home barefoot with her two siblings and parents.

“I got my mom and dad and I just ran out. I smelled gas and saw the smoke outside,” she said.

Another neighbor, Juana Salmoran, 41, said she felt her house “shake” following the explosion and “thought a car had crashed into the house.”

“I grabbed my daughter and we ran out. There was a lot of smoke,” she said.

Maisha Hanif, who lives next-door, said she heard the explosion and “people were screaming.”

“It was very chaotic and very disorganized,” she said, adding “We know [the homeowners] were renovating the home, but we don’t know what happened.”

Hanif’s father, Mohammed Hanif, 63, said that the landlord of a next-door building was among the injured.

“He was sitting outside in the back yard and smoking a cigarette and the whole wall came on him,” Mohammed said. “He was able to talk but he had a big bruise on his head.”

The explosion caused heavy structural damage to the home between Coney Island Avenue and East 8th Street and sent plumes of smoke billowing from the building as firefighters worked to put the blaze out.

Department of Buildings inspectors later Monday determined the family home was no longer structurally stable and ordered it demolished, a DOB spokeswoman said.

The cause of the blast was not immediately known.

Neighbors said the homeowners were out of town and that the building was being renovated.

Inspectors with the city Department of Buildings were conducting an investigation.