Fire victims remain hospitalized, some conditions improving

Photo Jan 09, 11 22 38 AM
The Bronx Times has learned that at least a dozen victims from the Jan. 9 fire remain in the hospital, as of Monday.
Photo Lloyd Mitchell

A week after the deadly fire at Twin Parks North West, at least a dozen victims remain hospitalized, according to hospital officials.

As of Monday, Jan. 17, the Bronx Times was able to confirm at least 12 people still remain in hospitals in New York City and Westchester, with at least two patients’ conditions improving.

A faulty space heater ignited a fire the morning of Jan. 9 on the third floor of a 120-unit 19-floor apartment building at 222 E. 181 St. The door to the duplex unit did not close behind the fleeing residents, opening up a path for smoke to travel throughout the building. Seventeen people, including 8 children, died from severe smoke inhalation.

Following the fire, 59 patients were transported to St. Barnabas Hospital, Jacobi Hospital, Montefiore Medical Center, the BronxCare Health System, Lincoln Medical Center, Harlem Hospital and a New York Presbyterian Manhattan location, according to a FDNY spokesperson. At the scene, 35 people experienced life-threatening injuries.

Jacobi Hospital still had five patients as of Monday; two of the patients’ conditions upgraded from serious to fair on Friday, while the other three remained in serious condition, spokesman John Doyle told the Bronx Times.

Jacobi initially treated 19 patients, and although two patients died, many were released from the east Bronx hospital on the day of the fire.

The New York Presbyterian hospital system also had five remaining patients as of Monday, after two were released over the weekend and one was released on Thursday, a spokesman told the Bronx Times. The spokesman could not provide an update on the statuses of the patients.

In total, 15 patients were admitted to New York Presbyterian, two of which died the day of the blaze and eight of which have since been discharged.

Westchester Medical Center has been caring for two patients from the fire, who remained in the Valhalla hospital Monday, spokesman Andrew LaGuardia told the Bronx Times. LaGuardia declined to comment further, citing patient privacy.

Of the 20 patients that arrived by ambulance to St. Barnabas, nine died, including two children, and the survivors were either discharged or transferred to New York Presbyterian’s Weill Cornell location or Westchester Medical Center for advanced treatment, St. Barnabas spokesman Steven Clark told the Bronx Times. St. Barnabas also saw 9 walk-in patients with non-life-threatening injuries the day of the fire.

Eight patients were initially transported in ambulances to BronxCare Health System — formerly known as Bronx Lebanon. Of those, three were transferred to Jacobi’s burn center and two were transported to Cornell’s burn center, a BronxCare spokesman told the Bronx Times. The other three patients had no vital signs upon arrival and could not be resuscitated. BronxCare also saw two adults and three children who experienced smoke inhalation as walk-ins; three were released the day of the fire and the other two were admitted to the general pediatric unit in stable condition until being released on late Wednesday, a few days after the incident.

“We’re very proud of our ER team and the doctors that came in on Sunday (Jan. 9) to respond to the crisis, and we did everything we could to save lives,” the BronxCare spokesman told the Bronx Times.

Montefiore received one patient the day of the fire — a minor who died — and treated another patient who has since been discharged, according to spokeswoman Laura Pilkington.

Of 72 people EMS assisted at the scene of the fire on Sunday, 13 did not want to be transported in an ambulance, and were either treated on the scene or declined EMS medical treatment, according to the FDNY spokesman.

Officials from Harlem and Lincoln hospitals have not responded to requests for comment. 

-with reporting by Jason Cohen

Reach Aliya Schneider at [email protected] or (718) 260-4597. For more coverage, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @bronxtimes.