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Residents forced to evacuate their apartments following manhole fire

firetruck-250x250Feb. 6, 2015 By Michael Florio

Twenty-five Astoria residents were forced to evacuate their apartments this morning due to a manhole fire that caused carbon monoxide levels to spike.

The fire, which erupted near 30-90 38th Street, caused the carbon monoxide (CO) levels to rise inside the apartment building, which forced the evacuation. The FDNY responded to the call at 5:30 am.

A ConEd spokesman said the FDNY evacuated the residents at 7:30 am.

An MTA bus was called to the location to serve as a temporary shelter for those forced to evacuate, allowing them to escape the frigid temperatures.

The fire is believed to have been caused by salt, according to a ConEd spokesman.

“The Salt can run down and corrode the wires which can cause a fire or smoky condition,” he said.

At this time it is unclear if those forced to evacuate have been let back into their apartments.

The protocol for high carbon monoxide is usually to evacuate the building, open the windows and let the CO levels go down, an FDNY spokesman said.

There were no reported injuries, according to the FDNY.

ConEd said there have been no power outages as a result of the fire, the spokesman said.

ConEd crews remain on the scene.

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