2nd fatal fire on same floor of building in one month in Brooklyn

Posted at 8:14 PM, Feb 22, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-22 20:14:24-05

It was the second fire here at 51 Ross Street in less than a month.

And not only did the fires happen in the same building they happened on the same floor, just a few doors away from each other.  And what’s worse is fire officials say one man might still be alive if he had only had a working smoke alarm.

The fire started around 3 A-M on the 12th floor of the Wythe Houses here in Williamsburg.

Witnesses say they woke up as the smell of smoke spread through the building.

Police say a 78-year-old man was killed and two others were injured in the blaze.

The fire marshall is still investigating the exact cause, but the fire is believed to be electrical and is not considered suspicious.

With frigid temperatures though out the area this week, neighbors say they wouldn’t be surprised if the fire started because the victim was trying to stay warm.

This fire comes after another woman, also in her 70’s was killed by a fire on the same floor.

Fire officials say that fire was started by a lit cigarette.

But fire officials say this fire was easily extinguished because it was contained in the apartment.  And they say the victim may have been able to escape if he had a working smoking alarm.

Some people from the building were concerned because the NYPD Crime Scene unit was out here long after the fire was extinguished.  But police and fire officials both say this fire is not considered suspicious. The medical examiner still has to determine the cause of death.