An apparent gas explosion rocked a three-story Bronx apartment building Thursday afternoon, injuring six adults and three young children — including a critically injured 3-year-old.
The other two injured children were a baby and a 5-year-old, sources told The Post.
An adult civilian was also critically injured; one firefighter suffered minor injuries, officials said.
Eight of the injured were rushed to hospitals. The ninth, a civilian, declined medical attention, fire officials said.
The blast, which was believed to have been caused by gas, was reported just after 3:20 p.m. at 1520 Paulding Ave. in Morris Park, fire officials said.
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The force blew a front door clear across Paulding Avenue and onto overhanging power lines, in which it remained twisted and entangled at nightfall.
“I just heard an explosion,” one resident, Yanely Rodriguez, told The Post as she dragged her suitcase away from her blown-out apartment, through the snow.
“That was it. But we all had to leave running. I don’t know what happened,” she added. “I’m just thankful to be alive.”
Alberto Martinez, 50, who lives in the apartment next door to the unit where the explosion happened, said that his wife, 55-year-old Norma Galarza, helped to get some children out, including a 14-month old.
“She’s the babysitter of the whole neighborhood,” he explained, “she knew two of the children she babysits were in danger.”
He added: “When the explosion happened she ran out of the building” to help.
“I’m very proud of her,” Martinez said. “I would never expect anything less of her. This is who she is.”
It took an hour for some 60 firefighters to extinguish the flames.
A spokesperson for Con Ed and the NYC’s Department of Buildings could not immediately comment on the cause of the blast.