What to Know
- Twenty firefighters were injured while battling a five-alarm fire on Staten Island over the weekend
- The fire broke out at a home on Steinway Avenue in New Springville on Saturday
- Four of the hurt firefighters were seriously injured in the blaze; no civilians were hurt
The five-alarm blaze that hurt 20 firefighters, some of them seriously, and damaged five homes on Staten Island over the weekend was caused by a child playing with a lighter, fire officials said Monday.
The cause of the fire that erupted at a home on Steinway Avenue in New Springville around 7 p.m. Saturday has officially been ruled accidental.
Four of the 20 hurt firefighters were seriously injured in the blaze, though the exact nature of their injuries wasn't immediately clear. No civilians were hurt.
The Red Cross said two families, including a total of 11 people, needed emergency housing due to the fire.
The FDNY reminded New Yorkers on Monday to talk to children about the dangers of playing with fire. It also said it has resources to help people who suspect a child is setting fires intentionally. Go to fdnysmart.org for more.
It's not the first time a playing child has sparked a major fire. Last year, a 3-year-old boy playing with a stove in a first-floor apartment near the Bronx Zoo sparked an inferno that spread through every floor of the five-story building within minutes, killing 12 people, including an 8-month-old baby. It was the city's deadliest residential fire in at least a quarter of a century.