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Dozens Displaced After Early Morning Fire In Union City

UNION CITY, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) – Dozens of residents have been displaced after a five-alarm fire that damaged at least six buildings in Union City.

Officials say the fire broke out in a building on New York Avenue around 2 a.m. Tuesday and the flames quickly spread to neighboring structures.

“The first two had heavy fire conditions, the other three had some fire and last two just had water,” North Hudson Fire and Rescue Director Jeff Welz told CBS 2’s Diane Macedo.

Welz said the structure of the buildings posed an especially tough challenge for firefighters.

“Those buildings are all attached, they share a common wall so the fire can spread very rapidly from building to building because the outer wall of one building is the inner wall of the next building,” he said.

Neighbors and residents described seeing heavy smoke and fire.

“The first side was engulfed in flames,” nearby resident Brendan Montenegro said. “Flames everywhere.”

“Me and my father, we stepped outside when we smelled too much smoke,” one resident told 1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck. “When we stepped outside, the first thing we saw was the store, the sign, everything was on fire.”

“I opened my window and stuck out my head and I saw that the grocery store on the corner, there were flames coming out of it,” another neighbor said.

There are no reports of serious injuries, but as many as 75 people have been displaced, Macedo reported.

Still no word on what caused the blaze.

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