Huge Fire Injures 34 on Staten Island, FDNY Says

By Nicholas Rizzi and Aidan Gardiner  | June 5, 2014 7:37am

STATEN ISLAND — A fast-moving fire engulfed a Rosebank home, injuring 34 people early Thursday and forcing a mother to throw her child from a window, witnesses and officials said.

The blaze started about 1 a.m. inside 205 Chestnut Ave., near Tompkins Avenue, and quickly grew. It took more than 200 firefighters to bring it under control, an FDNY spokesman said.

As smoke and fire spilled from the windows, a mother threw her daughter into her husband's arms below, neighbor Angel Acevedo said.

"The lady on the second floor threw her baby to her husband to try and catch her," he said.

It was unknown what condition the child was in.

"The fire just kept going. The smell of smoke was intense, everything was just pitch black," said Acevedo's wife, Yelany.

"It's horrible to know that families have lost literally everything," Acevedo's wife said.

Eleven civilians and 23 firefighters were injured in the blaze, the FDNY said. Some suffered serious injuries.

It was not immediately clear which hospital the injured were taken to and how many were transported.

Homes on either side of the fire were burned but it was not immediately known how severe the damage was, the FDNY said.

Fire marshals were investigating what sparked the fire Thursday.