One hundred and fifty firefighters rushed to an early morning fire that destroyed a Lido Beach home, an “intense” blaze in which several firefighters were injured.
The incident occurred on Friday at around 5:45 a.m., when firefighters and police responded to a residence on Blackheath Road to find it engulfed in flames.
According to Nassau County police, firefighters from the Long Beach, Point Lookout-Lido, Oceanside, Island Park and Freeport Fire departments responded with 150 firefighters and 17 apparatus vehicles to extinguish the fire.
Police said that the home, at 32 Blackheath Rd., was unoccupied and sustained extensive damage. According to Long Beach Assistant Fire Chief Antonio Cuevas, firefighters with the city’s professional unit were the first on the scene.
While the department does not normally respond to calls out of the city’s fire district, the department received a call regarding smoke possibly coming from a home on Maple Avenue, on the border of Lido Beach.
As firefighters responded to investigate that call, an additional call came in reporting the fire on Blackheath, with reports that a grandmother and three grandchildren were possibly trapped in the home. Turns out the smoke seen on Maple was emanating from 32 Blackheath Rd. Because Long Beach was the closest available unit, Cuevas said he made the decision to respond.
“As I pulled into the area, I saw it was just on the border of our district, where Blackheath backs up to Maple Blvd.,” Cuevas said. “When I pulled up, I found a fully involved house fire and upon arrival I had the next door neighbor screaming that there was a grandmother and kids in the house. I was not going to turn [firefighters] away — god forbid there was someone trapped in there, I could not live with that.”
The Point Lookout-Lido Fire Department was immediately notified, and responded with assistance from the Oceanside, Island Park and Freeport Fire departments, Cuevas said.
Cuevas said that the residents of the home were on vacation in Florida at the time. Still, firefighters were faced with a house that was completely engulfed in flames — the first floor was completely on fire, and parts of the second floor had already burned through the roof.