Norwood: FDNY responds to brush fire at Whalen Playground


FIREFIGHTERS EXTINGUISHED a brush fire that broke out at Mosholu Playground on Friday March 11, 2022 at approximately 3:20 p.m.
Photo by Sile Moloney

A fire truck and a handful of firefighters responded to a report of a brush fire that broke out in the Whalen Playground at East 205th Street and Perry Avenue in the Norwood section of the Bronx on Friday after – noon March 10. A brush fire is a fire involving low-growing plants.

Eyewitnesses said some people had already tried to put out the fire a bit, before the FDNY arrived around 3:44 p.m. because it had started to spread.

The FDNY later said it was alerted to the incident at 3:38 p.m., no injuries were reported, and the situation was brought under control by 4:12 p.m.

A FIRE TRUCK arrives to put out a brush fire which broke out at Mosholu Playground in Norwood on Friday March 11, 2022 at around 3.20pm.
Photo by Sile Moloney

The fire itself was approximately 1 foot tall by the time the FDNY arrived and had burned a grassy area approximately 15 to 20 square feet, near a tree, located behind a railing that separated the field area from real game.

An elderly man was seen trying to put out the remaining fire with his cane, while another man told him: ‘No, let the fire brigade do that. They are paid to do this. »

When suggested to be careful, the old man insisted he knew how to put out a fire. Norwood News attempted to speak with the man who had encouraged the old man to let the FDNY handle the situation but preferred not to comment.

A small BRUSH fire went out in Mosholu Playground in Norwood on Friday March 11, 2022 at around 3.20pm
Photo by Sile Moloney

We then spoke to Anthony Kotcebue, who was in the playground when the fire broke out, and asked him what happened. “We were sitting, listening to music and someone behind us told us there was a fire, and we saw it by chance. Probably one of the kids who left the grass on fire… we don’t know,” he said, adding that he remembers there were about three children in the area near the tree before the fire broke out.

When asked what time it was, Kotcebue replied, “It was around 3:20 p.m.”

Norwood News then asked the firefighters if they could say how the fire started. They said that since the grass was very dry, it probably caught fire quickly. [once in contact with a flame]and suggested it was probably started by children.

AN ELDERLY MAN attempts to put out a brush fire with his cane in Mosholu Playground on Friday March 11, 2022 at around 3.20pm
Photo by Sile Moloney

Before the FDNY arrived, we asked Kotcebue if anyone had phoned the department. He said, Yeah, someone called the fire department and left [them] knowing that there was a fire and that it was spreading.

He added that he was taller than in the attached photos. “Someone kinda turned it off,” he said. When asked how tall he was, Kotcebue replied, “A small part here, by the tree, here…” He added that there had been a cardboard box in the area of ​​the ‘fire.

When asked if the person who reduced the spread of the fire prevented him from reaching the trunk of the tree, he replied: Yeah.. and then it kind of widened and then it went down.

APPROXIMATELY 20 PEOPLE (a mix of adults and large and small children) were at Mosholu Playground in Norwood on Friday March 11, 2022 at around 3.20pm when a brush fire broke out near a tree. Most have left the playground. Some waited for the FDNY to arrive and put out the fire as seen here, while others left the scene.
Photo by Sile Moloney

Later we spoke to a woman who preferred not to give her name, who was with another woman and two young children, standing outside the playground and asked her if she knew what happened. had passed. Speaking in Spanish, she said: “The truth is, we don’t know. When asked how many people were in the playground when the fire broke out, she replied, “There were a lot of children, but I couldn’t say how many. . around 20. “

Kotcebue summed up the incident, saying, “Nothing too major…we’re all still alive.”

Harold B. McConnell