NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Multiple firefighters and civilians were hurt in a stubborn fire fueled by heavy winds in Brooklyn.

Fire crews started fighting the flames Wednesday evening. The blaze has now sparked concerns that part of the building could collapse.

“Yeah some firemen helped me and it was crazy,“ nine-year-old Javier Zuniga said.

Zuniga was home with his five-year-old brother and babysitter when the fire broke out in the sixth floor of his building in Sunset Park near Seventh Avenue and 44th Street.

(Credit: FDNY)

The boy told CBS2 smoke alarms in the hallway alerted them and they had to make a quick exit out the fire escape from the fourth floor.

Javier’s father was at work in Mineola when he got word. He rushed home, hearing that his children were safe.

“I hugged and kissed them,” Cesar zuniga told CBS2’s Valerie Castro. “I’m glad both of them are ok, I’m glad the babysitter is ok, and we’re hoping for the best for the cats.”

WEB EXTRA – FDNY Officials Detail A Devastating Apartment Fire In Brooklyn: 

FDNY officials say 23 people were injured; four of those are civilians and 19 are firefighters. Seven of the firefighters were taken to local hospitals to treat burns suffered in the blaze. None of the injuries are considered life-threatening.

The building was severely damaged and is now in danger of being condemned by the Department of Buildings.

Wind conditions were reportedly severe, with gusts up to 40 mph as firefighters worked to put out the blaze.

“We’d like to operate with the wind at our back. In this particular case we were operating directly into the wind, so a very severe condition up there on the top floor,” FDNY Chief of Department John Sudnik said.

The roof of the Brooklyn building completely collapsed on to the top floor, leaving it uninhabitable Wednesday night.


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