The search was underway yesterday for two missing people in the ruins of the explosion that leveled three buildings in the East Village last week.
Meanwhile, some residents of nearby buildings were allowed back into their apartments.
Firefighters were using cadaver-sniffing dogs for a second day on Shabbos to search for the two men who were last seen in the Sushi Park restaurant at 121 Second Ave. just north of 7th Street. The building, along with neighboring 119 and 123 Second Ave., was destroyed in the explosion on Thursday.
City officials say roughly 60 firefighters are on the scene suppressing pockets of fire needing to be extinguished, WCBS 880’s Monica Miller reported.
Under bright spotlights, firefighters also took on massive amounts of rubble from the three buildings – carefully digging through it by hand, CBS2’s Matt Kozar reported.
“We don’t just pick it up with machines and put it in a truck and drive it away,” said FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro.
Some firefighters are helping from an adjacent apartment building, relaying what they see from above.
Bowling alley worker Nicholas Figueroa, 23, was at Sushi Park at the time of the explosion, which originated in the 121 building, WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall reported.
“It has me shaking,” said his brother, Brandon Figueroa. “It’s very nerve-wracking to think about it.”
Nicholas Figueroa is a recent graduate of SUNY Buffalo State who had been working at Bowl-Mor Lanes.
The other missing man, 26-year-old Moises Locon, was a busboy of the restaurant.
“He’s my family,” said the busboy’s brother, Alfred Locon. “And he’s my brother and I just want to find him, and that’s it.”
Fire marshals were also at the smoldering scene, waiting for excavators to make a dent in the debris that is covering important clues in the investigation.
“There is a possibility here that the gas line was inappropriately accessed internally by people in the building,” but officials need to get access to the wreckage to explore it further, Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Friday.
He wouldn’t say more about why officials believe that’s a possibility.
Read more at CBS NEW YORK.