3 Children, 10 Firefighters Injured After 2 Fires Ripped Through Buildings in Brooklyn

NTD Newsroom
By NTD Newsroom
August 22, 2023New York
3 Children, 10 Firefighters Injured After 2 Fires Ripped Through Buildings in Brooklyn
A firetruck is parked outside Lenox Hill Hospital during the coronavirus pandemic in New York City, New York, on May 17, 2020. (Cindy Ord/Getty Images)

Three children and 10 firefighters have been injured after two separate fires ripped through buildings in Brooklyn within an hour of each other on Aug. 20.

According to officials, the fire destroyed most of an apartment as well as several businesses. The children, aged 4, 5, and 8, are reportedly in critical condition.

The other patients were reportedly in stable condition. According to Fire Commissioner Laura Kavanagh, one of the firefighters was initially hospitalized in critical condition, but responded well to the treatment, regaining consciousness later that afternoon, as posted on New York Fire Department’s official Facebook page.

“The red-tag Firefighter had an altered mental status. They were treated right away by Rescue Medics who administered Hydroxocobalamin which reverses the effects of CO. As soon as they were given it, they immediately came around,” said Fire Commissioner Kavanagh.

According to Fire Department chief of department John Hodgens, who spoke during a news conference, the apartment fire broke out on the 11th floor just after 11 a.m.

The fire alarms of the building on Livonia Avenue in the Brownsville section were reportedly out of order. The causes of the blazes are currently still being investigated, as reported by the New York Times.

Chief Hodgens and Commissioner Kavanagh spoke at the news conference in Williamsburg, as firefighters were still working to extinguish the second blaze on Lee Avenue in Williamsburg, which injured the 10 firefighters. The fire ravaged nine businesses, leaving a smell of smoke in the surrounding area.

“Most of the gates were locked up and the Firefighters had to work very hard to get into them. We used saws and cut the gates to get in. It was a challenging fire due to the hot weather and the fact that the fire had gained headway before they were able to get water on it,” according to Chief Hodgens, as posted on the fire service’s Facebook page.

Firefighters were quick to respond to the Brownsville fire, but were met with a locked door, resulting in having to force it open to gain access. Once inside, fire conditions were reportedly very severe.

The children, who were left alone in the apartment, were unconscious upon the fire crew’s arrival, Chief Hodgens confirmed, adding that rescue efforts into the apartment took nearly 10 minutes.

After being rescued, the children were given CPR as well as emergency medical care by paramedics.

The reason for the children being left alone in the apartment is currently being investigated. The children’s father was taken into custody for questioning. He was later identified as 37-year-old Anthony Halliburton, according to the New York Post.

Police charged Halliburton with three counts each of abandonment of a child and endangering the welfare of a child, the Post reported.

Firefighters proceeded to respond to the second fire in Williamsburg less than an hour after, following reports of the blaze spreading to several businesses. Upon entry, they were met with intense fire throughout.

According to Chief Hodgens, the emergency response included more than 200 firefighters and medical responders.

One of the businesses affected at Williamsburg was Sew Splendid, a sewing shop, as well as an adjacent roofing supplies store, which reportedly had burned down to its wooden beams, according to The New York Times.

Onlookers had gathered outside as fire crews hosed down chairs, shelves, and other scorched items scattered outside.