QUEENS — About 25 people were evacuated from their homes during a sub-freezing Friday morning after a nearby manhole fire filled their apartment building with carbon monoxide, the FDNY said.
The tenants of 30-90 38th St. had to rush out onto the street while the wind chill made it feel like -2 degrees because a manhole on 38th Street, between 31st Avenue and 30th Avenue, started smoking about 5:30 a.m., according to FDNY and National Weather Service spokesmen.
Firefighters had detected elevated carbon monoxide levels in the building and ordered residents out of their homes and onto an MTA bus for temporary shelter, an FDNY spokesman said.
No injuries were reported.
Temperatures at nearby LaGuardia Airport were about 13 degrees with a wind chill making it feel like -2 degrees, a NWS spokesman said.
It was not immediately clear what sparked the manhole fire, but they are often caused by salt melting snow into the underground electrical system and corroding the wires.
Con Edison was on scene trying to fix the damaged infrastructure underground, a spokesman said.
One building lost power because of the manhole fire and another one, which was vacant, lost gas, the Con Ed spokesman said.
Helicopters circled over Astoria about the same time as the fire, but it was not immediately clear if they were there for the incident.