An explosion shook Manhattan’s East Village neighborhood around 3:15 p.m. Thursday afternoon, causing one building to collapse as two others were engulfed in flames. Units in the collapsed five-story building, located at 121 Second Ave., were leased by both commercial and residential tenants, according to the New York Times.

NY Building Collapse

Eyewitness News

At least 25 people have been injured and four are in critical condition with serious burns, the New York Fire Department told reporters. The blaze was quickly upgraded to a seven-alarm fire, indicating the severity and difficulty of the situation.

Fire officials and NYPD officers are currently investigating the cause of the building accident. At the time of the explosion, private contractors had been working on a gas line in the kitchen of a sushi restaurant on the first floor of the collapsed building.  It is suspected that a gas leak led to the devastating explosion.

The East Village building explosion and collapse comes just within one year of a similar incident in East Harlem, in which a gas leak triggered an explosion that destroyed two buildings and killed at least eight people.

Building collapse can have serious consequences for all involved parties. In the event of total collapse, the personal and financial losses can be overwhelming. At Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro, Moses & Halperin, LLP, our thoughts are with those who have been affected by this tragic incident.

Posted in: Building Collapse