Yesterday morning, Fire Department of New York (FDNY) Battalion Chief Michael J. Fahy, 44, was struck and killed by debris when a two-story private residence under investigation for an illicit drug manufacturing operation exploded.
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, firefighters had first responded to a report of a gas smell at the Bronx location and found the drug lab, notifying police. The house exploded before the situation could be fully assessed and mitigated.
At 0632hrs on September 27, 2016 FDNY units were dispatched to a reported natural gas leak in the Bronx. Upon their arrival, firefighters encountered a strong odor of natural gas. Firefighters were able to gain entry into the dwelling. They discovered a high pressure gas pipe had broken and was leaking natural gas into the 2-story private dwelling.
Firefighters were able to shut off the gas at the curb valve. Upon further investigation inside the dwelling units discovered a marijuana grow house on the second floor. The features of the grow house provided very little ventilation options on the second floor. The second floor had all sort of ventilation equipment, lights and fans that enhanced the growth of the marijuana.
At 0732hrs, an explosion occurred and Battalion Chief Fahy was struck with debris from the force of the blast. It was determined that a large section of roof, approximately 18’x6′, which weighed almost a ton, struck Battalion Chief Fahy while he was trying to get cover from the explosion in the street. He was transported to Allen Pavilion Hospital in Manhattan. He succumbed to his injuries shortly after he arrived at the hospital.
Battalion Chief Fahy was posthumously promoted to Deputy Chief.
The fatal incident remains under investigation by authorities, but the New York Post reported that one person had been arrested in the case.
Fahy was a 17-year veteran of the department and father of three, according to the Associated Press.
Photos provided by John Hopper of First On Scene Photos.
Courtesy of Billy Goldfeder of Firefighter Close Calls, the following memorial info was released:
Both Thursday September 29, 2016, and Friday September 30, 2016
Flower Funeral Home
714 Yonkers Avenue, Yonkers, NY
MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL
Saturday Oct 1, 2016
470 Westchester Ave, Yonkers, NY
A donation page has been set up by the FDNY Foundation, the official nonprofit of the FDNY, to raise funds for Fahy’s family. Donations can be made at www.fdnyfoundation.org/donate by selecting the “Chief Michael J. Fahy Children’s Educational Fund” option on the page.