Seven Hospitalized After High-Rise Fire

Ageloff Fire 5Timothy J. Stenovec Firefighters extinguished an early morning blaze at Ageloff Towers.
Ageloff Fire 4
Ageloff Towers Fire 3
Ageloff Towers Fire 1Timothy J. StenovecThe fire was reported around 8 a.m. and declared under control about 45 minutes later.

Seven people were hospitalized with minor injuries this morning after a blaze ripped through a sixth-floor apartment of the Ageloff Towers on East Fourth Street near Avenue A, the authorities said.

Two people apparently suffered from smoke inhalation and all of the injured were taken to Beth Israel Medical Center. Officials said that there were no other injuries in the blaze, which occurred around 8 this morning and forced an evacuation of the 11-story building. The fire was declared under control at 8:45.

Dana Schwartz, a resident of the building, woke up early to go to the airport to fly to a wedding when she smelled smoke. At first she though it was her hair dryer, but then she heard a commotion coming from outside of her apartment.

“As soon as I smelled the smoke I heard pounding in the building and, like, a lot of people yelling,” said Ms. Schwartz, who is 24. “So I went out and one of my neighbors was looking out and I said, ‘There’s a fire we have to go.’ I came out and there were crazy flames coming out of the window.”

Ms. Schwartz ran with her luggage down the stairs and evacuated the building, where she was waiting for a family friend to come pick her up just minutes after the fire was extinguished.

“The scary part is over,” Ms. Schwartz said. “It’s scary not knowing what’s happening, but it’s fine now. I felt like it was under control.”

A woman who bystanders said was the resident of the destroyed apartment was accompanied by three children – one with bare feet – and was seen with a police officer trying to hail a cab.

Visibly shaken, the woman, who declined to speak with a reporter, huddled with the children while firefighters began gathering their equipment after they finished putting out the blaze.