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Officials Investigating After Vacant Irvington House Goes Up In Flames

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(credit: CBS 2)

(credit: CBS 2)

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IRVINGTON, NJ (CBSNewYork) — Officials say they are investigating a major fire in New Jersey that kept firefighters busy for hours and might have been set on purpose.

The fire broke out in a vacant building on 20th Avenue in Irvington around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday and spread to two nearby homes.

People living in those homes rushed outdoors to safety.

Radiyah White says she was fast asleep in her third floor apartment when the fire broke out.

She credits her barking dog for getting her up and allowing her to get out in time.

“Thank God for my husband and my dog cause they made sure they got me out first,” she said.

White says she barely made it out alive.

Rachell Tillery, White’s neighbor on the first floor, called the vacant building “a crack house” and blames drug addicts for starting the fire.

“I moved here in April. They robbed me, climbed in window, stole TVs and everything,” said Tillery. “All times of night, they be here.”

Irvington Deputy Fire Chief Matt Hibbet says live power lines came down on top of the burning home as the flames spread to the two adjacent buildings.

It ultimately took nearly 70 firefighters from multiple departments to get the fire under control.

There are no reports of any injuries. Fire officials are calling the blaze suspicious and are investigating.

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