Businesses destroyed, residents displaced in 3-alarm Brooklyn fire

FORT GREENE, Brooklyn (WABC) -- A three-alarm fire burned through a building in Brooklyn that housed both businesses and apartments.

Firefighters began battling the blaze on Greene Avenue around 4:30 a.m. in the Fort Greene section.

Fire consumed all floors of the corner building, and flames were seen shooting out of the roof.

"Just a significant amount of fire in that first-floor pizza store, in the rear of the first floor," FDNY Deputy Assistant Chief Joseph Jardin said. "Probably had been burning for a little while and was able to find its way into some void spaces and pipe chases and travel vertically up to the third floor."

The fire is believed to have started in one of the first-floor businesses, which included a dry cleaner and a pizzeria.

"I use this dry cleaners all the time," neighbor Nadine Person said. "It hurts. It's sad."

The shattering of windows disrupted the quiet neighborhood, and area residents were in disbelief as they saw the aftermath.

"I wasn't sure how close I was to the fire, but it woke me up around four in the morning," neighbor Jessie Ash said.

Fire officials say one woman escaped from the second floor, while the family living on the third floor wasn't home.

"Our understanding was there was one resident in a second-floor apartment, she self-evacuated using the interior stairway," Jardin said. "The family that lives on the top floor happened to be away on vacation."

Three people were taken to the hospital, but their injuries were said to be minor.

"We are supportive neighborhood, and we're going to come together to help with what just happened," Person said.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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