Trump bragged that his tower withstood a fire — but has been silent about the man who died in it

Depending on whom you followed more closely, there were two accounts of the fire Saturday night that tore through a 50th-floor apartment in Trump Tower, President Trump’s namesake building on Fifth Avenue in New York.

The first narrative unfolded through official alerts and images from the New York Fire Department, which painted a picture of an extraordinarily challenging — and ultimately fatal — blaze to contain and extinguish.

The fire broke out just before 6 p.m. Saturday, officials said. Soon, flames could be seen making their way across the unit as dark plumes of smoke billowed upward, obstructing many of the floors above.

By the time firefighters arrived at the 50th floor of the building, they found “the apartment was entirely on fire,” New York Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said Saturday.

Forcing their way into the unit, firefighters pulled out one person, unconscious and unresponsive, who had been trapped inside, Nigro added.

The man was taken to the hospital in critical condition, police said. He later died.

In all, six firefighters — of the roughly 200 or so who had responded — suffered minor injuries fighting the blaze, Nigro said.

For the president, however, the fire seemed first a chance to boast of the construction quality of Trump Tower on Twitter, his preferred method of communicating with the public.

“Very confined (well built building),” Trump tweeted Saturday, about an hour after the fire broke out. “Firemen (and women) did a great job. THANK YOU!”

Trump also declared that the fire had been extinguished — before it actually had been.

The fire was still not considered to be under control then because of smoke conditions above the 50th floor, Nigro said Saturday. It was brought under control shortly before 8 p.m. Saturday, about an hour after Trump’s tweet, fire officials said.

[Washington Post]

Trump Rescued by Firefighters Before Blasting Colorado Springs Fire Marshal

When it comes to first responders, Donald Trump plays favorites. It’s no secret that the Republican presidential nominee likes police officers. A lot. But firefighters — that relationship may be just a bit more complicated.

Since Trump’s campaign began, a series of fire officials across the country have become his unwitting nemeses, as Trump publicly grumbles about their enforcement of the capacity restrictions at some of his rally venues.

At a February event in Madison, Ala., for instance, he complained at least twice that the fire marshal had closed the gates of the stadium where he said some 32,000 had come to hear him speak (local estimates put the figure of actual attendees at closer to 10,000). “Let them come in, Mr. Fire Marshal,” Trump said.

In a rare shift earlier this month, Trump had the opposite complaint: Phoenix officials, he said, “broke the fire code” by allowing too many people into the Convention Center room where he’d spoken.

Those numbers didn’t quite jibe with the count of 4,200 to 4,500 his campaign gave reporters at the event — or with the fire department’s own numbers, which fell squarely in the middle of that range.

“Once capacity was reached, we closed the doors. No rules or codes were broken, and no one was in danger at anytime,” Phoenix Fire Department spokeswoman Shelly Jamison told local station KPNX, adding that the Trump campaign had been offered the use of a larger room, but had declined.

So there have been a few fiery attacks over the past few months. But on Friday in Colorado, Trump had a much less heated encounter with the Colorado Springs Fire Department after he and nine others were trapped in an elevator at The Mining Exchange Hotel.

“The firefighters were able to secure the elevator, open the top elevator hatch, lower a ladder into the elevator, which allowed all individuals to self-evacuate, including Mr. Trump, onto the second-floor lobby area,” fire department spokesman Steven Wilch told Colorado station KRDO in a Saturday report. Trump was over an hour late to his event at the University of Colorado campus located in solidly conservative Colorado Springs — but he made it.

If you think that’s the sort of thing that might prompt him to mention the fire department in his remarks at that event, as you may have heard Friday, you’re right! “We have a fire marshal that said we can’t allow more people,” Trump said, as the crowd booed. “….The reason they can’t let them in is because they don’t know what they’re doing.”

Fire Marshal Brett Lacey, the candidate said, was “probably a Democrat, probably a guy that doesn’t get it.”

Trump went on. “Hey, maybe they’re a Hillary person. Could that be possible? Probably,” he said, calling the restriction a “disgraceful situation.”

“This is the kind of thing we have in federal government also, by the way,” he said, “and then you wonder why we’re going to hell. That’s why we’re going to hell.”

Lacey — who was named Civilian of the Year by the department in February for his role responding to a pair of deadly mass shootings in the city — said later that he didn’t mind the dig. He noted that he’d allowed a last-minute boost in the number of individuals allowed in the room, after the Trump campaign reportedly distributed too many tickets. But in an interview with Colorado’s KKTV, the marshal refused to fight fire with fire.

“Sometimes there are people that aren’t very happy with some of the rules and regulations were required to enforce,” Lacey said. “But it doesn’t bother me at all.”