When it comes to the risk of fire, winter is one of the worst times of the year. With winter weather gripping Albany, a fire resulted in the death of one Albany woman and injuries to three other people.
A multi-unit building, located at 69 Grand St. in the Mansion neighborhood of Albany, caught fire around 7:51 p.m. Monday night. More than a dozen firefighters and at least six pieces of heavy equipment were needed to extinguish the fatal fire.
Two individuals had jumped from an upper porch located in the back of the burning building before crews arrived. Albany Police Detective James Miller said that the individuals received minor injuries and were taken to Albany Medical Center Hospital. The fire also caused injury to a firefighter who slipped on ice while attempting to help rescue the residents.
Fire Chief Robert Forezzi said he believes that the fire originated in the lower levels of the building. The body of a resident was found in the basement and it is believed she died of smoke inhalation. After authorities could not locate the victim's family, they publicly released the name of the 49-year-old woman. Shortly after they released her name, the victim's daughter was located in Lockport.
The exact cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Dennis Poormano watched the blaze from across the street. He said, "I have never seen a fire like that before. It was like something out of a movie - there was smoke everywhere. I could barely see."
Source: Albany Times Union, "Family member of fire victim located," Dayelin Roman, 2/24/2011
Albany Times Union, "1 killed in Albany inferno," Bryan Fitzgerald, 2/22/2011