THE BRONX - Residents of City Island and local leaders are fighting to save the only firehouse in the area.

Ladder 53 is one of 20 firehouses to be cut as part of Mayor Michael Bloomberg's proposed budget. The firehouse has been up for elimination several times, but has always survived.

Residents say if the firehouse is eliminated it would take more than two minutes for the nearest firehouse to send responders to an emergency. Those minutes could be lifesaving for older residents, they say.

The firehouse could be cut as early as June 1.