The FDNY spokesperson stated that the fire was caused by an "oven fire" and was confined to the stove. Immediate action was taken, shutting down the gas and notifying the relevant utility company. Fortunately, no injuries were reported as a result of the incident.
Residents of the affected tower, primarily two female occupants residing on the 38th floor, noticed a smell of smoke within their apartment earlier. However, other residents seemed unaware of the fire when interviewed on the same day.
Don Miller, from West End Strategies PR firm representing RY Management, the management company for Tracey Towers, confirmed that the reported stove fire had been extinguished prior to the arrival of the fire department. He further assured that there was no extension of the fire and no injuries were reported.
Jean Hill, the president of the Tracey Towers Tenants Organization, later informed Norwood News that it was a grease fire on the stove, promptly extinguished by a neighbor using a fire extinguisher. She emphasized that there were no injuries and the only damage was to the stove itself.
Tracey Towers, an architectural creation by Paul Rudolph, consists of two high-rise towers housing units of various sizes, including one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments. The complex is part of NYC Department of Housing, Preservation & Development (HPD)'s Mitchell Lama affordable rental and cooperative program, making it the second-largest co-op in the Bronx. Notably, it is home to a significant Ghanaian community among other residents.
According to a fire safety notice posted on the ground floor of the affected 38-floor tower (Building 40), the building structure is "non-combustible." Each floor near Wing A has an alarm positioned by the exit door; however, the alarm does not transmit to the fire department. The notice also indicates the absence of an emergency voice communication system and a public address system. The building is equipped with a partially covered sprinkler system, including sprinkler heads in specific areas such as the compactor chute, laundry room, storage space, and main concourse compactor roof.
In previous incidents at Tracey Towers, a larger fire occurred on the 24th floor of the other 41-floor tower (Building 20) on July 23, 2021. Additionally, a more severe fire broke out on March 10, 2020, coinciding with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The latter incident, a compactor fire, resulted in heavy smoke from the 15th floor up to the 41st floor.
Following the 2021 fire, concerns were raised during a residents' meeting regarding the accumulation of trash on balconies, which posed a potential fire hazard. Carelessness with lit cigarettes by residents was also highlighted. The meeting also addressed issues related to elevator and intercom malfunctions.
Regarding the recent fire, which coincided with ongoing early voting for the June 27 primary, the usual community room used as the onsite polling site in Building 40 was occupied for either commercial or music video filming. Alternate arrangements were made for voting in Community Room B of Building 40, as confirmed by Jean Hill. The evacuation status of the building during the fire remains unknown, pending a response from the FDNY.
While inside Building 40 on Saturday, a UPS delivery