Fire rips thru Hammond Creek homes

The Mianos: (left-right) Christopher, Jessica and Robert were still cobbling together the remains the morning after a blaze tore through their two-story Throggs Neck home and the adjacent residences.
Photo by Ben Kochman

A fierce fire ripped through a Throggs Neck enclave early Sunday evening March 9, destroying four homes, city officials said.

Flames also damaged three more houses on Schuyler Terrace, a quiet cluster of homes off Pennyfield Avenue, overlooking Hammond Creek near the Throggs Neck bridge, said FDNY authorities.

The blaze broke out just after 5:30 pm and raged for nearly 90 minutes until more than 100 firefighters got the flames under control, officials said. No one was hurt during the inferno.

A “hail” of flames

The cause of the fire remains under investigation, but witnesses say they heard a series of loud cracking noises before the flames broke out.

“My wife was with a few of her friends downstairs, and all of a sudden they heard popping noises, and thought it was hail,” said Robert Miano, whose two-story home was among those destroyed by the fire. “By the time they got outside, the whole house was lit up.”

Embers spread quickly from home to the next on the cozy side street, picking up speed with the wind, witnesses said.

The neighborhood is known for being a tight-knit community popular in the summertime for its proximity to Hammond Creek.

The Monday morning after the fire, locals were still picking through the remains as inspectors from Con Edison surveyed the damage to power lines.

“I can’t even begin to describe it,” said Miano. “The attic, living room, bedroom, all gone. It’s a mess.”

More fire mayhem

A few hours after the fire, another blaze broke out in the rear of a home on nearby East Tremont Avenue between Lawton and Harding avenues, FDNY officials said.

Flames erupted at 7:49 am and were extinguished 15 minutes later. One resident, not immediately identified, was taken to a local hospital with serious but not life-threatening injuries, authorities said.

Reach Reporter Ben Kochman at (718) 742–3394. E-mail him at Follow him on Twitter @benkochman.

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