CROWN HEIGHTS, Brooklyn - Firefighters battled a fast-moving fire that spread through three residential buildings in Brooklyn Tuesday night.
The fire started around 9:15 p.m. inside of a three-story building on Bergen Street in Crown Heights.
Within about an hour, it had spread to two neighboring buildings.
Seven first responders were injured in the fire, including several firefighters and a police officer, but none of the injuries were serious.
Fire burns through three residential buildings in Crown Heights
Everyone who lives in the buildings made it out, but when firefighters went inside, they were met with a badly damaged staircase.
"We had no civilian injuries, all of the occupants of the buildings self evacuated before we got here," said Asst. Chief Roger Sakowich, FDNY. "It was an advanced fire upon arrival and we did have a problem with our members going up the stairs, the stairs gave way and we had three firefighters hurt on the stairway, not serious injuries, they've been moved to the hospital and I'm going there now to check on their condition, but they're not serious."
PHOTOS from the scene:
The fire led to some frightening moments for residents.
"We just heard a bunch of commotion and my roommate came down and he said, you guys have got to come out, we've got to evacuate," said Sveerre Wegge.
Some were able to return to their buildings, but others were not so fortunate. "My thoughts go out to them, I feel bad for them and I hope they're OK," said Wegge.
Firefighters say the flames were largely under control by 11 p.m.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Three people living in the building where the fire started are now homeless and being assisted by the Red Cross.