NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The retired New Jersey locksmith who had been selling sets of master keys on eBay has shut the door on the sales, following some pressure from city officials.
WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reports
The master keys, which are given to New York City firefighters, control virtually all elevators and traffic lights in New York City and could unlock some firehouse doors and construction sites including One World Trade, according to officials.
“We talked to the guy doing it, he said he would stop,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg told reporters including WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb.
Daniel Ferraris, 69, of Union City said the city fire marshal called him so he stopped selling the sets of five keys on Sunday.
But Bloomberg said there is no clear solution to preventing this type of sale from happening again.
“The truth of the matter is every firefighter has to have a key so there’s 11,000 keys and there’s turnover and it’s probably not practical to totally stop anybody from ever giving a key to somebody else,” Bloomberg said.
Some other city leaders feared the master keys, which were being sold for $150 apiece, could have fallen into the wrong hands, putting all New Yorkers at risk.
“It is a clear problem. You’re going to have so many keys out there. We could pass a law saying it’s bad to give them or you’ll go to jail or we’ll shoot you if you do it. But in a practical sense, you have to have something that’s enforceable,” Bloomberg said.
On Sunday, New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and former fire chief Howard Safir separately condemned the sale of the master keys as potentially hazardous.
It remains unclear how Ferraris obtained the sets of master keys and if their possession or sale was illegal.
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