YONKERS, N.Y. -- A Yonkers apartment fire that injured several residents and 11 firefighters was started by a second-floor resident falling asleep with a cigarette, causing his couch cushions to ignite.
In all, more than 77 firefighters responded to the fire that started at 1:45 a.m. Wednesday, at 951 McLean Ave., according to Yonkers Deputy Chief Kevin Ford, chief of Fire Prevention & Investigation.
When crews arrived, they found heavy smoke and fire extending from apartment 2D into the hallway and up the open staircase with multiple people trapped.
As firefighters brought the fire in apartment 2D under control, others began rescuing trapped residents throughout the building, Ford said.
Firefighters rescued victims who could walk on their own, and removed two unconscious victims. One of the two people removed was in cardiac arrest and CPR was immediately started once she was out of the building, Ford said.
The victim was transported to Jacobi Hospital in the Bronx and remains in critical, but stable condition. The other victim had severe burns and was also transported to Jacobi. Two other residents were transported to Westchester Medical center in Valhalla for burns, and two more were transported to St. Joseph’s Medical Center for smoke inhalation.
The fire was brought under control in roughly 90 minutes, he added.
Eleven firefighters were treated for minor injuries, heat exhaustion and dehydration.
The fire department has released the property back to the owner and the Yonkers Police Department remains on scene to ensure that the building is secure.
Yonkers Office of Emergency Management was on scene to assist with the relocation of the building occupants, Ford said.