Bronx Building Fire That Killed 12, Injured 15 Started By 3-Year-Old Playing With Stove

According to the information provided by the commissioner of the New York Fire Department, Daniel Nigro, the fire in a building in the Bronx has been the worst fire in 25 years in New York. The FDNY confirmed that the sinister started when a 3-and-a-half-year-old child, living on the first floor, was playing with a stove.

The unfortunate event claimed the lives of at least 12 people, aged between 1 and 63. According to Nigro, the fire spread quickly in the 29-unit building because the inhabitants of that apartment fled leaving the doors open, causing the flames to spread up the stairs, acting as a "chimney," Nigro said. This caused that all the people who tried to go down the stairs to leave perished in the process. “Close the door, close the door, close the door," said Nigro, making it clear that if there is a fire the door must be closed to prevent the flames from getting out of control. The official also said that all the smoke detectors were working properly and there was nothing structural in the building that contributed to the fire.

When the firefighters arrived there were about 20 people in escape routes according to CNN. Five people were declared dead in the building, one of them was a small child. The searches of the building were finalized and it is already known who are all the victims and survivors. "This saddens our entire department at this time of year," said Nigro."This is a tragedy, without a doubt, historic in its magnitude," said the city's fire commissioner. "Our hearts are with all the families that lost a loved one here and all fighting for their lives."

Mayor Bill de Blasio told CNN that the apartment building is believed to be more than 100 years old. De Blasio called the deadly fire that broke the "worst tragedy of fire in this city in at least a quarter of a century." More than 170 firefighters responded to the scene.

Bronx Fire The fire that killed 12 people in a Bronx building in New York began in the kitchen of the first floor of an apartment when a 3 and-a-half year-old child was playing with a stove. Getty Images

Joel Rodriguez, 40, was one of the building's residents who made it out alive. He told to CNN that when the alarm went off he "opened the door and it was pitch black." "I'm relieved I'm alive, but at the same time, it's like, where do I go?," he added. "Right now, it's a memorial," he said. "For me, that's like a sanctuary or a memorial."

ABC 30 reported that four victims from one family have been identified as: 19-year-old Shawntay Young, 37-year-old Karen Stewart Francis, and her two daughters, 2-year-old Kylie Francis and 7-year-old Kelesha "Kelly" Francis. 56-year-old Maria Baptise and her 8-month-old granddaughter also died. Four people remained hospitalized with critical injuries, “fighting for their lives right now,” Mr. de Blasio said according to the New York Times

The communications officer for the Red Cross, Michael de Vulpillieres, informed that they are giving out blankets, temporary housing, food, drinks and mental health care to residents, and teaming up with the Fire Department they set up a tent with fire education pamphlets. "Disasters are traumatic even when there's not a loss of life. But when you have this number of people pass as a result of a disaster like this, it's heartbreaking," de Vulpillieres said.

The officials called the tragedy the deadliest in New York City since 1990, remembering when 87 people died in a blaze at the Happy Land social club.

If you think you know someone who may have been affected by the event and are unable to contact them, please call 311. From outside of NYC, you may call (212) 639-9675.

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Shirley Gomez has been exposed to many aspects of the art world. Besides being a Fashion Journalist, she studied Fashion Styling and Fashion Styling for Men at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, Interior Design at UNIBE and Fashion Design at ITSMJ Fashion School in the Dominican Republic. She worked as a Fashion Journalist, Fashion Stylist and Social Media Manager at one of the most recognized magazines in the Dominican Republic, Oh! Magazine, as an occasional Entertainment Journalist, of the prestigious newspaper “Listín Diario”, as well as a fashion collaborator of a radio show aired in 100.9 FM SuperQ. When Shirley is not writing you can find her listening Demi Lovato or Beyonce's songs, decorating her apartment or watching Family Feud.