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NYC residents struggle with flooding after partial collapse of Bronx building

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Residents of a Morris Heights building in the Bronx are grappling with flooding and structural issues following heavy rain on Saturday. Jacqueline Tomlinson, a resident, discovered a significant leak in her closet upon returning home from an overnight shift. The leak damaged various items, including electric cooking equipment and electronics stored in the closet.

Tomlinson expressed frustration, stating, “This got really really soaked,” as she showcased the wet items relocated to her living room. The heavy rainfall, totaling three to four inches across all five boroughs, exacerbated the situation for many residents.

For Tomlinson, this flooding incident adds to the challenges her family has faced since the building partially collapsed in December. She described the previous incident as “terrible,” recalling how water infiltrated her closet as if it were raining indoors. Since returning to her apartment in January, Tomlinson’s family has lacked gas access for cooking, further complicating their daily lives.

The Department of Buildings conducted an inspection on Saturday, resulting in a violation issued to the landlord for failure to maintain the building. Although no water pooling was found on the roof, officials discovered a broken glass skylight. Tomlinson, along with other residents, took proactive measures to address the flooding, with some assisting in clearing water from the building’s lobby.

Legal Aid Society attorneys representing residents emphasized the pervasive dissatisfaction with the building’s conditions. Zoe Kheyman, a staff attorney, highlighted the water intrusion in the lobby as indicative of long-standing neglect and potential structural integrity issues.

The FDNY identified a possible cause for the leak, suggesting an internal pipe blockage or breakage. Fire officials clarified that the recent incident appears unrelated to the partial collapse in December, occurring in a different area of the building. Despite ongoing challenges, residents and advocates continue to seek solutions to address the building’s deteriorating conditions and ensure the safety and well-being of all occupants.

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