NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Flames tore through the 5-story apartment building on East 116th Street around 2 a.m. Monday morning, injuring 10 people including four NYPD police officers.
The fire broke out in an apartment building Lexington and Park avenues in East Harlem, reports CBS2’s Janelle Burrell.
All of the units and buildings next door were evacuated.
People who live in the building say they were awakened by a loud bang and then smoke and flames.
“I go to my parents’ room and I start banging on the door and tell them there is a fire,” said Humberto Amesqica. “I see everyone run outside, and we see our neighbors come outside.”
“We got up in the middle of the night and I got scared,” said Miguel Moreno. “We had to run down the stairs from the back.”
Neighbors credit police officers first on scene and firefighters who worked quickly to get the residents out.
“She said the firefighters and police act very fast, very very fast,” said Juana Barrera.
It took firefighters about 30 minutes to get the fire under control.
The police officers were taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation while civilians were treated for minor injuries.
The damage was contained to a single unit. Most residents were able to return home about an hour after the flames were out.
The cause of the fire has not been determined.