Late in the evening on Tuesday, Nov. 30, a giant explosion rocked a building at 58 Vermont St. in Cypress Hills and sent flames into nearby buildings. In total, the fire displaced 54 people from their homes, injured six people and caused enormous damage. Miraculously, everyone survived. 

In response, State Senator Julia Salazar, whose district includes both Bushwick and Cypress Hills, among other neighborhoods, launched a GoFundMe to support the displaced families during this holiday season. Sen. Salazar launched the fundraiser along with the Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation. 

“We are deeply grateful to the first responders who ensured that nobody was severely injured, or worse, in the fire. However, our neighbors need generous support in recovering from this devastating fire,” the GoFundMe’s description reads. 

All funds raised will go directly to families impacted by the fire. 

The Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation will be responsible with collecting and allocating the donations among the families.

More than 100 firefighters responded to the scene, and the cause of the fire is currently being investigated. According to CBS New York, neighbors are pointing to the basement’s boiler system, as they started smelling gas 12 hours before the blast. Reportedly, the residents called their landlord, who told them not to call 911. 

In a tweet yesterday evening, U.S. Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez explained she was also taking steps to help out the families impacted. “My office is working to make sure affected families can access emergency services,” she wrote. 

Featured image: Screenshot from fundraiser.

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