Suspicious Coney Island blaze critically injures two officers

Police said mattresses were set on fire at apartment building on Surf Avenue

2007 Surf Avenue
2007 Surf Avenue

Updated 9:03 a.m.: A suspicious fire in a Coney Island housing development on Sunday afternoon critically injured two New York Police Department officers and required 70 firefighters to put out the blaze. A 16-year-old who lives in the building has been taken into custody.

Police said the fire started on the 13th floor of 2007 Surf Avenue after a resident lit bedding, the New York Daily News reported. Within six minutes, the flames grew to all-hands status, and three NYPD Housing Bureau officers rushed to the scene but were stopped by the smoke after taking an elevator up to the 13th floor, Police Commissioner Bill Bratton told the Daily News.

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“Fire department personnel arrived at the building and made their way up to the 13th floor where they located both police officers unconscious and unresponsive,” Bratton told the paper.

The two officers were taken to Brooklyn hospitals before being transferred to trauma centers in the Bronx and Manhattan, according to the Times, and both were in critical condition as of Sunday night. Three firefighters and nine residents were treated at the scene, and one resident was hospitalized, the Times reported.

“Today is another sobering reminder of the dangers that face all of our first responders … ” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. [NYDN] and [NYT]Julie Strickland