GRAND ISLAND, N.Y. (WIVB) – On Sunday, authorities told News that that the victim in a fire Saturday on Grand Island was an 82 year-old woman. Her name was not released.
The fire started Saturday night around 8:55 p.m. at the Grant Court Apartments on Baseline Road.
“Town police made an effort to get inside to rescue the victim. They were driven back by immense heat and smoke. Our first line crew went in found the victim and we were able to bring her out. She has succumbed at the scene,” said Matt Osinski, Grand Island Fire Chief. “The fire started in the basement of this apartment complex. Fire crews were able to keep the blaze contained to one apartment. Five other units have smoke and water damage,” he added.
After an initial investigation, Grand Island fire investigators say the blaze likely started as a result of careless smoking. They say an oxygen tank in the apartment created a more intense fire that made problems for firefighters.
One firefighter was injured fighting the blaze and officials say he was treated for an ankle injury and was doing better Sunday.
Eight people were displaced from their nearby homes and the Red Cross has been assisting them.
Even though the fire caused $200,000 in damage, many agree that it still doesn’t compare to the loss of a fellow neighbor.
“Anytime there’s a fire in your community it’s a hard thing when somebody perishes in that fire. It’s definitely difficult to deal with,” Osinski said.