Newborn Baby among 16 Injured During Fire in Upper East Side High-Rise: FDNY

WPIX 11 - January 14, 2020

by Mark Sundstrom , Anthony DiLorenzo

UPPER EAST SIDE, Manhattan — According to the FDNY, 16 people were injured when a fire broke out in an Upper East Side apartment building fire early Tuesday, including a baby, two adults in critical condition and four firefighters.

Flames first sparked just before 2 a.m. in an apartment kitchen on 24th floor of a high-rise building on East 72nd Street, just east of York Avenue, officials said.

Authorities said the occupants of the apartment tried to escape but passed out, leaving the apartment door open and allowing the fire to spread and smoke to fill the 41-story building.

"The door open is what changes this fire completely," Fire Chief Joseph Ferrante said to the media on the scene after the blaze. "It turned a one-room kitchen fire into a fire that spread throughout the upper floors of the building."

The FDNY said 12 civilians were injured, including a 1-week-old baby. Two of the adults who initially tried to escape suffered life-threatening injuries, officials said. The extent of the other injuries is not known at this time.

Four firefighters also suffered injuries while battling the blaze, authorities said.

The fire was officially under control by 4 a.m., fire officials confirmed.