2005-09-22 / Front Page


By Charles Rogers

Starrett Towers building where fire erupted on Monday.                                            Charles RogersStarrett Towers building where fire erupted on Monday. Charles Rogers A 38-year-old Starrett City resident died early Monday after a trash can fire erupted in his home in his high rise apartment building, officials said.

Eric Rosado, a Homeland Security customs agent who lived in the fourth floor apartment at 1325 Pennsylvania Avenue with his wife and seven-year-old son, apparently died of cardiac arrest shortly after the smoky blaze broke out, according to Fire Department officials. He was taken to Brookdale Hospital and pronounced dead there. Rosado’s wife and son were away visiting relatives at the time of the fire.

Although some residents of the building were evacuated by 75th Precinct police and firefighters from Canarsie’s Battalion 58, Engine 257 and Ladder 170, as well as other companies, no one else was injured, officials said. Sources said some residents of other floors were not even aware of the fire, but tenants on adjoining floors said the smoke was “very heavy.”

Fire Department spokesperson Firefighter Josh Fiore said the fire began at about 2:35 a.m. apparently in a trash can in the small kitchen. He said fire marshals who were investigating the source of the blaze said it was considered accidental, but they suspected an ashtray might have been dumped in the trash can while some cigarette or cigar embers were still lit. Published sources said Rosado was a cigar smoker.

Fiore said the fire was under control within about 30 minutes and other tenants were allowed back into their apartments.

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