1 resident dead, firefighter missing in massive blaze at New York senior living facility


SPRING VALLEY, N.Y. (WPIX) — One person is dead and a firefighter is missing after a large fire ripped through an assisted living facility in Rockland County, New York, early Tuesday.

Police received a report just before 1 a.m. about smoke inside the Evergreen Court Home for Adults, Rockland County Fire coordinator Chris Kear said at a press briefing.

Firefighters arrived to find heavy smoke and reports of numerous people trapped inside the building, which houses 100-125 residents, Kear said. It was not clear how many of those residents were inside the building at the time of the fire.

Authorities said one resident died after being taken to the hospital, but their identity was not immediately released. Another 20 residents were also hospitalized, some in serious condition.

Between 20 and 30 residents were rescued, according to officials. The Greater New York Red Cross said the city asked it to be on standby and that all the residents evacuated had been moved to neighboring facilities.

Two firefighters were among those injured and hospitalized, including one with serious carbon monoxide poisoning, officials said.

Another firefighter, from the Spring Valley Fire Department, was unaccounted for Tuesday morning, Kear said.

The firefighter disappeared after calling “mayday” — a call for help — while rescuing residents on the building’s third floor, officials said.

The “mayday” call was answered but the fire prevented fellow firefighters from locating him.

Video from overnight showed a portion of the structure collapsing amid the raging inferno.

The missing firefighter has not been pronounced dead and responders were still digging through the rubble looking for him at the time of the press briefing.

“There’s always hope,” Kear said. The firefighter’s identity was not given.

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