Nineteen people including nine children have died at a five-alarm apartment fire in the Bronx Sunday where at least 66 people were injured according to New York City officials.
The apartment, located on East 181st Street, saw around 200 firefighters respond to the blaze that occurred inside the building, the New York City Fire Department said. Authorities were called to the scene at 11 A.M. and managed to contain the fire 2 hours later.
Fire Commissioner Dan Nigro said he anticipated “numerous fatalities” earlier in the day.
“The last time we had a loss of life that may be this horrific was at a fire which was over 30 years ago here in The Bronx,” says Nigro.
The commissioner seemed to be referring to a fire that killed 87 people in 1990 at the unlicensed Happy Land social club. A man who worked at the club’s coat check-in set the club ablaze after a heated argument with his former girlfriend.
Fire marshals determined the cause of the fire was a faulty space heater.
The fire comes days after a rowhouse in Philadelphia went up in flames killing 12 people, eight of whom were children. Officials said none of the four-battery operated smoke detectors were working at the time.