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“Bridgeport, CT — Sept. 14, 2014 â€“ A 2-year-old child remains hospitalized at Shriners Hospital in Boston following a two-alarm fire on Washington Avenue.
Her mother remains in critical condition at Bridgeport Hospital, and her father has been upgraded to good condition.
â€œFirst and foremost, I want to express my deepest sympathies those who were affected by this blaze,â€ said Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch. â€œThis is a tragic occurrence, and the fact that it has left a two-year-old child in critical condition is heart wrenching. Iâ€™m asking families across our city to join me and my family in praying for those who were injured and displaced by this unfortunate event.â€
Four people were hospitalized after an early-morning fire in an apartment building on Washington Avenue. The fourth victim has been treated and released from the hospital.
“Our firefighters did an outstanding job,â€ said Bridgeport Fire Chief Brian Rooney. â€œThe rescuers didn’t wait for hose lines. As always, our firefighters put other people’s safety ahead of their own.”
As engines arrived, the father told firefighters that his child and her mother were still inside the apartment. Before fire hoses were charged with water, firefighters began a rescue operation armed with only several pressurized, handheld water extinguishers.
In the second floor apartment, firefighters encountered heavy fire in a very difficult environment that left little room to move. They located the victims, carried them to the window and firefighters outside brought them down.
â€œThey faced severe fire conditions with flames rolling on the ceiling above them,â€ said Deputy Chief Robert Petrucelli. â€œThe firefighters executed a perfect team effort, simultaneously fighting the fire and working to rescue the victims in a very hostile environment.â€
Firefighters responded to 223 Washington Ave., a four-story brick apartment building, at12:30 this morning.
As firefighters arrived, residents were evacuating down a fire escape and out of the front door of the building. Firefighters learned that there were people still inside the building, including inside the apartment where the fire started. Firefighters immediately started rescue efforts.
Firefighters entered the building and rescued four people. Two elderly people were escorted out of their unit by firefighters and brought to safety.
Other firefighters crawled into the second-floor apartment through thick smoke and located the mother and daughter.
Outside, firefighters on a ladder truck outside raised the aerial ladder to the apartment window and others raised ground ladders.
Firefighters inside handed the child to a firefighter in the aerial bucket. He gave the child to another firefighter who brought her down on a ground ladder. Inside, firefighters lifted the mother, who was unconscious, through the window. She was brought down by the firefighter on the ladder truck.
â€œItâ€™s been a tough week for firefighters in Bridgeport that has put them to an unforeseen test,â€ said Mayor Finch.
The department also battled a massive, five-alarm fire in the East End Thursday.
â€œBut theyâ€™ve passed with flying colors. Their commitment to keeping kids and families safe and secure in our city goes above-and-beyond anything we could ever ask of them. I cannot thank Chief Rooney and his team enough for their unwavering dedication to the Park City and our residents.â€
These are the firefighters who entered the apartment and rescued the woman and her child: Lt. Fran McNellis, Lt. Jim Buck, Firefighter Dave Diaz, Firefighter Jim Doolan, Firefighter Keith Muratori and Firefighter Timothy Gies
These are the firefighters who assisted with the rescues in the aerial ladder and ground ladders: Lt. Joseph Kirkland, Lt. Marcus Dierna, Pumper Engineer Irwin Ayala, Firefighter Mark Bryant and Firefighter Mike Candela.
â€œThese firefighters will say they were â€˜just doing their jobs,â€™â€ said Mayor Finch. â€œI disagree. I say their actions were heroic.â€