Sept. 20--WATERVLIET -- Firefighters rescued five people including a man and his young daughter from third floor windows as fire tore through an apartment building at the Fenimore Trace Apartments on Route 2.
Six people were hospitalized with smoke inhalation and minor burns in a fire that broke out just before 3:30 a.m. Friday.
Fire Chief Scott Skinner said that as crews arrived at the complex they found a man dangling his young daughter out a window to get her away from the smoke and trying to throw her to waiting police officers below.
Skinner said that the officers convinced the man to hold on a little longer so firefighters could reach the window with a ladder and pluck them both to safety.
"He was going to throw (her) out," Skinner said.
Nearly simultaneously firefighters from Troy rescued three people from a third-floor window in the rear of the building, No. 12, he said.
The child was among the six people taken to the hospital but the chief said none of the injuries appeared to be serious.
All told, 34 people have been temporarily displaced by the blaze which is believed to have started on the third floor, in the front of the building, Skinner said.
An adjoining building, No. 11, sustained significant water damage but firefighters were able to cut trench in the roof to stop the flames from spreading.
Nearby, building No. 10 was evacuated.
"He was going to throw the baby out and then he was going to jump because they could not get into the hallway," said Aniece Lembo, 49, who lives in the basement of No. 12.
The cause is still under investigation. An engineer is on the scene trying to decide if No. 12 needs to be torn down.
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