Firefighter burned in Brooklyn fire shares survival tale

An FDNY firefighter from Port Jefferson Station who sustained severe burns battling a Brooklyn fire spoke to News 12 Long Island today about his ordeal.

PORT JEFFERSON STATION - An FDNY firefighter from Port Jefferson Station who sustained severe burns battling a Brooklyn fire spoke to News 12 Long Island today about his ordeal.

Jim Gersbeck was listed in critical condition just 10 days ago after escaping an apartment fire in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn. Today, he says he's feeling great despite burns to his ears and face.

Gersbeck says when he and fellow firefighter Rob Wiedmann, of Islip Terrace, answered the call, they were expecting a "typical" fire, but when they got into the apartment, it became engulfed in flames. He recalls that he didn't feel his skin burning until he was out of the building. That is when he saw his colleague fall out the window on fire.

"Somebody was watching over me in that room and guiding me back to that door real fast," he says.

Gersbeck, a 25-year veteran, has been released from the hospital and says he is eager to return to work.

Wiedmann is still in the hospital with burns across half of his body.

advertisement | advertise on News 12

Top 5 Must See

Nassau police say the incident is the fifth 1 Police: Carle Place knifepoint robbery linked to Nassau pattern
The funds would also go toward repairing and 2 Lawmakers agree to include water protection in state budget
A developer wants to change the zoning so 3 Battle brews over proposed 3-story apartment building in Islip
Cesar Gonzales-Mugaburu took in more than 100 4 Ridge foster father sex abuse trial begins
5 Hofstra men's lacrosse off to impressive start

advertisement | advertise on News 12

Features

Each week, News 12's Doug Geed explores the Check out fun things to do on the East End!

Explore the Twin Forks with News 12's Doug Geed.

Each week a different shelter visits News 12 Dog Day Fridays Series

Each week a different shelter visits News 12 Long Island with pets up for adoption.

News 12 digs deep to find Long Island's Discover Long Island's Hidden Past

News 12's Danielle Campbell digs into Long Island's roots.

News 12's Lily Stolzberg sees how much Long On The Spot

News 12's Lily Stolzberg sees how much Long Islanders know about everything and anything.

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to News12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service Electric℠ video customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.

LOGIN SUBSCRIBE