Two men were left clinging to life after a fire tore through their Manhattan apartment building where lithium-ion batteries were later found, the FDNY said.
The fire broke out about 6:05 a.m. Monday on the second floor of the building on Broadway near W. 99th St.
It took 77 firefighters about 40 minutes to bring the blaze under control, the FDNY said.
Medics rushed a 50-year-old man to New York-Presbyterian Hospital Weill Cornell and a 30-year-old man to Harlem Hospital. Both were in critical condition from severe burns.
The cause of the fire has not yet been determined but the FDNY said lithium-ion batteries were found at the scene.
The potentially deadly batteries have sparked fires that have killed 17 New Yorkers so far this year, pushing the city toward a grim milestone in fire deaths, according to FDNY Commissioner Laura Kavanagh.
“This number is staggering and is devastating, and it underlies a problem that we have been sounding an alarm on for some time,” she said last Monday after three generations of a Brooklyn family were killed in a blaze sparked by the batteries. “We are on track to surpass 100 fire deaths this year. That is an extraordinary number not seen in decades.”
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