Bronx Foot Locker Destroyed In 5-Alarm Blaze

CBS 2 - October 12, 2006

(CBS/AP) BRONX Nearly 200 firefighters are at a five-alarm fire at a Foot Locker store in the Bronx. The fire has caused heavy damage to the two-story brick building that covers a block. Also one firefighter was reported injured.

The fire was reported at 7:32 a.m. inside the store on East Fordham Road and spread quickly.

No one was believed to be inside, but the thick black smoke billowing out made breathing difficult a block away in the Grand Concourse.

The apparent smell of burning sneakers filled the air.

The New York City Fire Department says the fire apparently started in the rear of the shoe store, and went to a fifth alarm shortly after 11 a.m.

Firefighters had to break holes through the walls of the building just to get at it.

Some two and half hours after the fire started, the blaze was so intense and the smoke so thick that firefighters couldn't get inside. They are calling their operation a holding action, trying to contain it from spreading to neighboring buildings.

One firefighter was taken to Jacobi Medical Center with a minor back injury.

A total of 44 units, with 198 firefighters, are at the scene.

The Fordham Road around the store is cordoned off and dozens of businesses are closed.