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Police & Fire

Woman Found Hiding Under Table Killed In Three-Alarm Fire

A woman was found dead inside a basement apartment during a three-alarm fire.
A woman was found dead inside a basement apartment during a three-alarm fire. Photo Credit: Google Maps Street View

A woman was found dead hiding under a kitchen table after a three-alarm fire broke out at a multiple-family structure in the area.

The blaze began in Ulster County around 10:52 p.m., Wednesday, May 20, at 77 Abruyn Street in the City of Kingston.

Cit of Kingston firefighters arrived on the scene within three minutes and found smoke coming from a first-floor apartment, said Kingston Assistant Fire Chief Chris Rea.

Occupants had already evacuated by the time firefighters arrived, but one tenant informed fire personnel that a woman who lived in a basement apartment was not accounted for, Rea said.

Firefighters made entry into the apartment which had an active fire inside and found the 56-year-old woman under the table in the kitchen, he said.

The woman, who was located within six minutes of firefighters arriving on the scene, was turned over to Mobile Life Support Services, where she was pronounced dead at the scene, the chief said.

A second tenant from another apartment was transported to the Kingston Hospital for treatment of smoke inhalation, he said.

While in the basement apartment, firefighters doing overhaul found that the fire had moved, via plaster lathe walls, to the first-floor apartment, which then traveled to the dining room.

Seven people were displaced due to the fire.

The fire was signaled as three-alarm bringing assistance from the Ulster County Hose FAST Team, the Port Ewen Fire Department, and the Ulster County Bureau of Fire. A total of 50 fire personnel were on the scene.

The building, which had four apartments, received heavy fire and smoke damage. The basement apartment was a total loss, Rea said.

No firefighters were injured.

The Kingston Fire Department Investigation Unit determined the fire started in the basement apartment stove and was classified as unintentional.

The deceased woman has not been identified pending an autopsy and notification of next of kin. 

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