Fire at Gravesend public housing complex kills one man

gravesend fire
Fatal fire: A 63-year-old man died in a fire that swept Gravesend’s Marlboro Houses on Saturday.
Photo by Lloyd Mitchell

A blaze that swept the fifth floor at a Gravesend public housing complex killed a 63-year-old man on Saturday morning.

The fire broke out on the fifth floor of Marlboro Houses on W. Eighth Street between 86th Street and Avenue X a little before 1:47 pm, authorities report. 

Firefighters representing 12 units rushed to the scene, where they saw flames whipping out of a fifth floor apartment, witnesses said. First responders rushed into the unit, 5H, where they found a man lying unconscious in his bedroom amid dense smoke, according to a firefighter on the scene. 

“It was so hot inside that apartment the smoke detectors were hanging off the wall,” said one responder. “It was lights out in terms of visibility.”

gravesend fire
More than 60 firefighters responded to the fire on Jan. 4.Photo by Lloyd Mitchell

The victim had entered his bedroom to put out the fire, and had passed out because of the smoke, the Daily News reported.  

First responders performed CPR on the victim and transported him to Coney Island Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, officials say. Two firefighters and one emergency responder suffered minor injuries.

Responders quelled the fire at around 2:20 pm, authorities said. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, and police are withholding the victim’s name until his family is notified.  

gravesend fire
The blaze tore through an apartment on the fifth floor of Marlboro Houses.Photo by Lloyd Mitchell