A two-year-old boy was dropped to safety out of a two-story apartment building after he and his father became trapped when the building caught on fire Monday.
Dramatic cellphone video footage reveals the moment when the two-year-old, dangling from the second-floor window, is dropped into the arms of New Jersey first responders.
Officials believed the building had been fully cleared until a father appeared at the window, trapped inside by heavy smoke. After the toddler was dropped to the safety of first responders, his father, who has not yet been publicly identified, also jumped down.
His fall was broken by rescuers and shrubbery surrounding the building, police said.
Police had thought everyone inside the apartment complex had been cleared out when they discovered the man and his toddler at a second floor window (Pictures: South Brunswick Police Department / SoBrunswickPD/Twitter)
‘We thought the building was evacuated, and then there’s somebody at the window and then we said, “Oh my God, he has a baby,”‘ police Sargent John Penney told NBC New York.
The rescue, which was was captured on video from different angles, involved officials from the South Brunswick Township Police Department and Chief Chris Perez of the Monmouth Junction Fire Department.
‘We knew we had to act fast, as there wasn’t time to mess around,’ he said. ‘The smoke was coming out so bad.’
The father and son sustained minor injuries, though it’s unclear what they were. The toddler’s were minor enough that he was seen outside the apartment complex later Monday, running to his mother, who had not been home when the fire began.
The fire broke out at the Southridge Woods apartments in the Monmouth Junction community of South Brunswick around 8.17am, according to the area’s volunteer fire department.
About 50 firefighters responded to the three-story apartment complex, where heavy fire was quickly spreading across the top two floors of the building. One resident told NBC News that no fire alarms had gone off when the fire first broke out, though it’s unclear what may have caused the blaze.
No other injuries were reported, and the cause of the fire is still under investigation.
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