PHOTOS: As the seven-alarm fire engulfed Kings Plaza mall’s parking garage, radios used to communicate by firefighters kept going in and out. There were seven “May Day” calls from firefighters during the height of the fire that consumed over a hundred cars on Sept. 17, 2018, whose oxygen tanks were depleting as they were lost in the dense smoke.
These communication deficits were revealed at an FDNY drill at Kings Plaza over the Memorial Day weekend. Fire officials say the facility has many radio “dead-zones,” and simple radio “repeaters” installed in such locations might have mitigated the “dead-zones” protecting many firefighters from injury.
More than 21 people, 18 of whom were firefighters, were injured in the smoky blaze that involved more than 100 vehicles being stored there by a local Jeep dealership.
More than 40 firefighters toured the site on Saturday, May 25, some of whom had battled the fire that September day. Firefighters recounted harrowing tales of desperate men lost in the heavy black smoke, their air tanks running low as they stretched lines and searched for trapped civilians.