Tenants impacted by deadly Prospect Ave. fire plan to file lawsuit

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THE BRONX -

Tenants impacted by a fire last year on Prospect Avenue — the city’s deadliest fire in decades — are planning to file a lawsuit.

The Dec. 28 fire at 2363 Prospect Ave. killed 13 people.

Attorney Robert Vilensky represents several tenants of the building. They have filed a notice of claim with New York City, eventually planning to sue the city, various agencies and the building's landlord.

"There's really two aspects to this," Vilensky said. "and they both start with the letter C, you have cause and you have containment."

Kawbena Mensah says he replays the day of the fire repeatedly in his mind. His son, 26-year-old Army National Guard Pvt. Emmanuel Mensah, died in the fire after heroically going back inside multiple times to help rescue people.

"Once the funeral is over, my son is buried, I've been in the apartment alone, just going through what happened," the elder Mensah says.

The tenants allege several contributing factors to the deadly fire, including a frozen fire hydrant, nonworking smoke detectors, the stove where the fire started not having child safety covers and apartment doors not having self-closing hinges.

The claim demands about $10 million paid for each victim and less for other tenants who suffered lesser injuries and property damage.

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