lower east side

Woman, Man Burned as Arsonist Torches NYC Salon

Two people suffered burns after an apparent arsonist poured gasoline in a salon and set the business on fire

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A quiet afternoon in the Lower East Side turned to chaos on Father's Day after an apparent arsonist struck a salon by igniting gasoline, fire and police officials say.

Two people -- a 60-year-old Asian woman and a 46-year-old man -- were burned in the Sunday evening fracas at Sasa Beauty Salon on Eldridge Street. The woman suffered burns to her face, upper torso and back while the man sustained burns over much of his body, according to officials.

No updates on their conditions were immediately available early Tuesday.

Authorities say the fire was set on purpose, though no arrests have been made. They believe someone poured gasoline inside the building and torched it. Witnesses say a neighbor who tried to pull open the front door of the salon as smoke poured out saw a man running from the building covered in soot. It's not clear if that was the arsonist.

One of them, Phil Casaceli, said he works at a restaurant a few doors down and ran right into the mayhem to try to help.

Video taken amid the chaos shows the man with a fire extinguisher he used to spray inside the business.

After the first man came running out of the salon, Casaceli said a woman with scorched clothes also burst out from the shop.

The FDNY investigation is ongoing.

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