Footage of a daring rescue in which a hero firefighter rappelled down to the 16th floor of a high rise building to rescue a trapped woman as heavy smoke poured from her apartment has been shared online.

When the call came in of a blaze at a residential building on Lenox Avenue in Harlem at 1:30pm local time on Tuesday, firefighter Brian Quinn and his crew rushed to the scene. 

An engine worked to extinguish the fire at the same time, Quinn dangled precariously out a 17th floor window, talking to the desperate and terrified woman on the window sill below. 

Amazing Roof Rope Rescue by A firefighter from Lad 30 in Harlem today. Epic Work & teamwork in order to help save a life & helps remind us of why we are called NY’s Bravest!

“I stayed at the window and tried to calm her down, and told her not to jump, that we were going to come and get her,” Quinn said. 

“I was right behind her, so if she did decide to jump or let go I was holding her to the glass. I just said, ‘I’m not going to let you fall. We’re going to get you inside.’”

The fast-acting fire crews tamed the blaze within 40 minutes. Two residents were hospitalized, but their condition is currently unknown. 

Hero Firefighter Brian Quinn in action, at a 16 floor high rise fire in Manhattan, saving the life of an individual inside a 15th floor apartment.Repost Image from @kyleglenullsperger

Many online praised the efforts of the rescue crew, describing New York firefighters as “the best of the best.”

“I just saw this story on TV & I began to cry into my breakfast plate. How is it that some of humanity is capable of this kind of selfless, courageous service to others,” wrote one Twitter user in response to the footage of the incident. 

New York Fire Department (FDNY) commissioner Daniel A. Nigro praised “the bravery” of the fire crews, calling it a “really a heroic rescue.”

“It’s something that’s rarely done, and yet they exercised their skills quickly, they assessed the situation quickly, and they did what had to be done bravely,” Nigro said.

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