Volume 18 • Issue 35 | January 13 - 19, 2006

Tenants displaced after King St. fire

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By Tonya Garcia

A three-alarm fire broke out in a six-floor residential building in Hudson Square on January 9, causing heavy damage and relocation of the building’s tenants. No one was seriously injured but one firefighter hurt his knee putting out the blaze.

The fire started at about 2 p.m. Monday in a third floor rear apartment at 22 King St., said Deputy Assistant Chief Ronald Spadafora. Firefighters responding to the call had a “tough time opening apartments,” said Assistant Chief Spadafora, and were “chasing” the fire as it moved vertically through the plumbing to the top of the building. Officials are investigating how the fire started and the extent of the damage.

Residents of the 20-unit building near who were home at the time were sent fleeing on fire escapes and to the roof as smoke gathered in the hallway. “I didn’t even leave the top floor,” said Dennis Lane, 60, a 35-year resident of the building near Varick St.. Lane happened to be on his way out when he heard the fire alarm. “I got to the stairs and couldn’t even see the bottom,” he said. “So I went to the fire door, to the roof, and the fire department was already there.” Lane managed to make it to the street safely by exiting through an adjoining building.

Black smoke billowing from the fire could be seen for blocks. “I came from the south and all I saw was my building on fire,” said Demetri Martin, 32, who couldn’t get into his apartment, but could see the fireman’s hose running through his bedroom window from the sidewalk out front.

He has been staying with a friend and said no one has told him when he will be able to move back.

The American Red Cross was on the scene to offer assistance to displaced residents and four tenants have asked for help.

Downtown Express photo by Brett C Vermilyea
Firefighters put out a fire at 22 King St. Monday.
The 20-unit apartment building is closed to residents.


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