Five people were injured and two vehicles damaged in a pair of manhole fires in Woodhaven early Thursday morning.
The fire department responded to the blaze on 88th Road and 75th Street just before 1 a.m., officials said, and the flames were under control around 2 a.m.
The fires, which awoke residents, were caused by a failure in underground electrical wiring and equipment, according to Con Edison.
The victims were taken to Jamaica Hospital for smoke inhalation.
Senator Michael Gianaris rushed over to the area after the fire was put out. He said the smell of fire was still lingering in the air and the street was blocked off. Gianaris was concerned about the trouble with the electrical system.
“Unfortunately this is not our first experience with Con Ed having problems with their infrastructure,” he said. “It was a little bit too familiar.”