At least 12 people were killed and four others wounded in the deadliest residential fire to hit New York City in at least a quarter century swept through a Bronx apartment building Thursday, the Associated Press reported.
The dead included a child around a year old, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said during a briefing outside the building, the report said.
Video uploaded to social media showed emergency services on the scene.
The blaze broke out on the first floor of a five-story building just before 7 pm and quickly ripped through the roughly century-old structure, which stands in a row of similar apartment buildings a block from the grounds of the Bronx Zoo.
The cause remained under investigation.
About 170 firefighters worked in bone-chilling cold, just 15 degrees, to rescue people from the building. Water sprayed from hoses froze on the street.
Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro called the fire, “historic in its magnitude,” because of the number of lives lost. Excluding the Sept. 11 attacks, it was the worst fire in the city since 87 people were killed at a social club fire in the Bronx in 1990, the report said.
“Our hearts go out to every person who lost a loved one here and everyone who is fighting for their lives,” Nigro said.