Today is the anniversary of the tragic Line of Duty Deaths for Canarsie (Brooklyn) Firefighters from FDNY Ladder 170: Joe Cavalieri, Chris Bopp and Jimmy Bohan. Early Friday morning December 18, 1998, FDNY along the entire fire service experienced another tragic multi-loss LODD 7 days before Christmas. At 0454 hours Brooklyn C.O. send 1st alarm companies for a top floor fire of a 10 story 50 x 200 fireproof building used as a senior citizen’s residence. Engine 257 and Ladder 170 were 1st due and arrived within 4 minutes with fire showing out 2 windows. Second and 3rd alarms were quickly transmitted. As per SOP, 1st due Ladder 170 were assigned to search the fire floor for victims. Lieutenant Joseph Cavalieri with FF’s Christopher Bopp and James Bohan went up 10 flights of stairs with cans and tools to search for and rescue the resident of apartment 10-D, who was believed trapped…but she got out prior, unknown to FF’s.
On her way out, the lady left her apartment door open. The additional air from the hallway fed the fire and blew it out the windows. The halls were equipped with sprinklers but they were deactivated. As the Lieutenant and FF’s got to the door, the winds changed and blew estimated 30 mph winds back into the apartment creating a 2,000 degree fireball now blowing into the hallway.
The 3 FF’s were able to transmit a MAYDAY …but that was it. The extreme heat trapped them, horrifically asphyxiated them and burned their masks off. Also injured in the fire were 6 other FF’s and 4 residents. Despite efforts to save their lives they succumbed to the injuries. Today, December 19, 2014, we remember FDNY’s Lieutenant Joseph Cavalieri, FF Christopher Bopp and FF James Bohan.
READ THE FIRE REPORT:
MORE FROM CHIEF MONTAGNA: