More than 100 firefighters from 18 different fire departments in Nassau County rushed to Floral Park Monday morning to battle a four-alarm fire on Jericho Turnpike that damaged multiple businesses.
A two-story building at 266 Jericho caught fire around 10:30 a.m. and was later under control by first responders around 2:30 p.m., said Nassau County Fire Marshal Michael Uttaro.
“We still have people on the scene,” Uttaro told Blank Slate Media Tuesday afternoon. “Once the conditions inside improve, we can then go in and make a determination on the cause of the fire.”
A 911 call reporting smoke in the building was made at 10:23 a.m., Uttaro said. Floral Park Fire Department was first on the scene and made a call to mutual aid for assistance on the working fire, Uttaro said.
Floral Park Chief James Dodson was in command of the scene and ordered firefighters to evacuate with their hose lines after conditions worsened in the basement and to attack the fire from only the outside. Buildings on either side of 266 Jericho only suffered moderate smoke damage.
“Basement fires are some of the most dangerous fires that firefighters face,” Uttaro said.
First responders responded to the scene Monday night for an overnight standby to check for hot spots, which includes evaluating high-risk areas for rapid fire spread. Excavators worked on removing any debris that was blocking access, Uttaro said.
Pictures and videos shared on social media showed black smoke coming from the address, where an acupuncturist and shoe repair shop are located, as first responders established ladders and hose lines to attack the flames.
Several businesses were affected by the fire, including two on the first floor and more on both the second floor and in the basement. There were no residences in the building and all occupants at the time of the fire safely self-evacuated, Uttaro said.
No civilians were injured in the fire. Two firefighters were transported to local hospitals for minor injuries before being released, Uttaro said. Three firefighters were evaluated at the scene but refused further medical attention, Uttaro said.
A Floral Park ladder truck struck a pillar near the Long Island Rail Road overpass on Tulip Avenue during the response to the call, injuring two firefighters.
The Floral Park Building Department will determine if the building needs to be torn down.
“The Fire Department did a great job of holding the fire to the building of origin,” Uttaro said.