Friday, December 19, 2014


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Hudson Valley

Firefighters spend a second day fighting fire in Kiryas Joel

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Albany/HV: Firefighters spend a second day fighting fire in Kiryas Joel
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It was another tough day for area firefighters. As our Christian Farrell reports, they had to return to Kiryas Joel for a second straight day to fight a fire that just won't go out.

KIRYAS JOEL, N.Y. -- It's burning again.

"Basically, it's called a rekindle. Must have been a couple of hot spots that reflared," said Kiryas Joel Assistant Fire Chief Yitzchok Bernath.

Thursday afternoon, 6 Premishlan Way in Kiryas Joel draws a crowd of firefighters. For the second straight day. The three story structure that had been home to six families just a day ago is now under siege from firefighters taking direct aim.

The bitterly cold weather again not making the job of fighting the fire easy. The wind has picked-up on day two.

"Biggest concern right now?" our reporter asked.

"Just the safety of the people surrounding. That's the biggest issue. It can be very dangerous. It can go right to the next building," said Bernath.

Officials say the fire fighting strategy being used is called a defensive operation, which means no one is to go into the building and the idea is to get as much water on any fire that remains.

While a day earlier it seemed the fire had the upper hand, now it appears the water is winning, some of it having already turned to ice from the previous day's efforts. Officials say the next step will be to tear the building down.

"As soon as it gets under control, the other guys are going to kicking in. The excavators will be taking the building apart," said Bernath.

Officials estimate some 50 people are now homeless from the fire. The cause of it remains under investigation.

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