Wednesday, October 22, 2014

News
City of Utica creates a fund for the family of four year old fire victim
By GARY LIBERATORE


UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Fire officials in the CIty of Utica are still not releasing the name of the four year old girl pulled from a fire at the Adrean Terrace Apartments on Friday, but do tell NEWSChannel 2 she remains in critical condition at Upstate Medical University in Syracuse.

On Monday afternoon, Utica Mayor Robert Palmieri and Utica Fire Chief Russell Brooks announced they have created a fund for the family of the girl to help them with the cost of traveling back and forth to Syracuse, and also to help with the cost of replacing what they lost in the fire.

Monetary donations are being accepted at the Utica Fire Department headquarters at 552 Bleecker St., or you can call the department at (315) 792-0264.

As far as the investigation, Chief Brooks says the investigation into the cause is still ongoing, but he does say the fire started in the kitchen.

He also says numerous curtains, drapes and blankets were attached to the walls, which contributed to the excessive heat and smoke inside the building.

Also on Monday, Brooks looked at some home video shot the night of the fire by a resident of the Adrean Terrace Apartments.

On the video, you can see firefighters break through windows on the second floor of the building and then walk right in to a very dangerous situation with thick black smoke filling the inside, they could barely see in front of them.

"Most of these men have children of their own," Chief Brooks said. "So it's an emotional moment. They disregard their own safety, their own welfare, and the priority is the life of the child, there were eight children in that building, and two parents."

Also on the home video, about three minutes after the firefighters broke through the upstairs window, you can see the little girl being carried out by a firefighter,

The chief says he is praying for that little girl and her family.

He says she has a tough road ahead recovering from severe burns to her airway, and also burns on her hands and feet.

Chief Brooks said he wanted to point out how helpful responding members of the Utica Police Department were.

"They rendered assistance to our guys," he said. "When guys went into the building, the concern is always that the door is going to slam and lock behind them and be trapped. They held doors open, they helped them with those, they did various tasks police usually don't do. But when there's a life at stake, it's all hands on deck."