Updated: 10-30-2006 11:24:57 AM


IKIMULISA LIVINGSTON
Courtesy of The New York Post


A five-alarm fire fanned by high winds destroyed a row of four houses in The Bronx yesterday, injuring 19 firefighters and three tenants.

The blaze broke out at 4:22 a.m. in the basement of 509 Concord Ave. in the Mott Haven section and quickly spread to three adjacent structures.

Firefighters battled for more than two hours before bringing the blaze under control. The cause was not known.

The building at 509 Concord was reduced to a shell of charred wood.

Thomas Creegan, 42, who lived on the second floor, said he was awakened by someone screaming, "Fire!"

"I was worried about the first-floor tenants. They have a baby. So I told my wife to call 911 and I went downstairs," he said.

But when he got there, he found that the family was safe, so he got out himself.

"I got nothing," he said. "I don't even have ID. I'm nobody. But everybody's OK."

Chief Glenn Hawkins of Battalion 14 said winds of 20 mph with gusts of 30 mph were a big factor in the spread of the blaze.

All of the injuries were minor.

Republished with permission of The New York Post.

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