Tracie Strahan

Woman Dies, Several Firefighters Hurt After Blaze Rips Through NYC Home Amid Stifling Heat: Officials

A fire that sent residents running from the burning Brooklyn home claimed the life of a woman. 

A 67-year-old woman died after the blaze broke out in a home on East 49th Street in Flatlands around 1 Monday morning, police said. Esther Gee was rushed to an area hospital, but it was there where she was pronounced dead. 

A chair lift on the stairs made it difficult for firefighters to put the blaze out and get to Gee who was on the second floor, the FDNY said. When firefighters got to her, she was unconscious and unresponsive. 

Several firefighters suffered minor injuries and officials said the stifling heat made it even harder on them. Video from the scene shows those firefighters being treated inside an ambulance with oxygen masks on their faces. 

"The heat is very difficult," FDNY Chief Salvatore Palmeri said at the scene. "They have to carry 70, 80 pounds of equipment, it's a 100 degrees out so it's the toughest time of the year to fight a fire." 

It wasn't immediately clear what may have sparked the blaze. 

Contact Us