It could take two to three weeks for New York City firefighters to be 100% sure the smoky conflagration in a massive public records storage warehouse is fully out, the FDNY said Sunday.
The city’s Bravest were poised to enter a third day Monday at the waterfront facility at the foot of North 11th Street — and the explanation fir frustrated residents in the now-trendy hood? Paper. Mountains and mountains of public records from courts, health agencies, and child welfare.
“Tremendous amount of flammables,” said James Leonard, FDNY chief of department. “This type of building, too, once that paper starts burning, it’s very difficult. It burrows in.”
Now: Firefighters aboard FDNY fire boats battle the 5-alarm fire in Brooklyn. pic.twitter.com/GGychdehZi
— FDNY (@FDNY) January 31, 2015
Folks downwind of the CitiStorage inferno are urged to stay indoors and keep their windows closed until the clouds and acrid odors dissipate, city health officials said.
Meanwhile, it has emerged that fire crews had responded to a smaller fire at the facility several hours before the big blaze took off, and that the half-block-long warehouse was fully engulfed when crews returned at 6:20 a.m.
Whipping winds and winter’s deep freeze made attacking the fire that much more difficult for the 275 firefighters and 55 units that were called to battle the spectacular 7-alarm fire, officials said.
As the winds calmed late Sunday, the FDNY had a better handle on the scene. Other than one person suffering smoke inhalation at the scene, no serious injuries were reported.