WILLIAMSBURG — About 20 residents were evacuated from three Williamsburg buildings because of high carbon monoxide levels while firefighters battled a manhole fire on Maujer Street Tuesday afternoon, an FDNY official said.
About 60 firefighters raced to the intersection of Maujer and Humbolt streets about 1:30 p.m., where a manhole was billowing smoke, witnesses said.
Residents from 221, 217 and 215 Maujer Street between Humbolt Street and Bushwick Avenue were told to clear out of their apartments until the gas dissipated.
Philip Leff, 28, who lives on Maujer Street, left his apartment after noticing that it "smelled like rubber" and seeing smoke pouring out of the manhole from his window.
"There was a big explosion with a blue flame on top," said Leff about what he saw when he left his building. "The cover popped off."
There were no injuries and the fire was under control by 2:20 p.m., fire officials said. Carbon monoxide levels were also dropping by that time, officials added.