A fund run by the mayor’s office on Thursday announced the launch of the Borough Park Relief Fund, in partnership with many city-wide and community organizations, to support those affected by the building explosion on 13th Avenue that occurred over Sukkos.
The Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City will help with relocation, property damage and medical expenses. The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce will assist affected business owners.
Meanwhile, Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro on Thursday announced the results of a probe into the explosion that killed two people and injured 13. The investigation made it clear that gas had nothing to do with the blast, as originally had been widely believed.
In a statement, Nigro said that the cause preliminarily focused on the possibility of natural gas “due to information from the building landlord that the occupant of the second floor apartment … had been removing a stove while in the course of vacating the apartment.”
However, new information since confirmed by examination of the building gas meters, found that the natural gas pipe to the building had been turned off months ago.
The probe is ongoing, but detectives believe the blast may have been done intentionally.
Thirteenth Ave., which had been closed since the blast, has been slowly reopening. All driving restrictions have been lifted outside the main disaster area between 42nd and 43rd streets. On that block, one lane was reopened for throughway traffic only.