NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Firefighters battled a two-alarm blaze early this morning at an apartment building in the Bronx.

The flames broke out shortly before 1:30 a.m. at a building on Morris Avenue near East 179th Street in the Mount Hope section.

As CBS2’s Reena Roy reported, tenants were jolted awake in the middle of the night.

“Flames were shooting out the front of the building. My landlord woke me up and told me to get outside,” resident Fruquan Godson said. “It was chaos.”

“It was pouring out from the side of the building,” resident Winston Burrell added. “It looked ferocious, it was very intense.”

Crews had the fire under control about an hour later.

No civilians were hurt, but one firefighter was taken to the hospital with minor injuries.

“I’m glad everybody got out of it,” said Godson.

“The firefighters did a very fantastic job in regards to handling the flames, putting it out and keeping everyone safe,” Burrell said.

The flames blew out windows and left the building charred. It was deemed unsafe for residents to return.

Roy spoke with one woman who was helping a relative that lived there.

“It is very, very, very bad, because the water is coming down, pouring like rain water right now,” said Deidre Gray, adding the ceiling may cave in.

The Red Cross said it’s helping three families, made up of 18 adults.

“It could’ve been – their life could’ve been taken,” Gray said. “They’re not coping very well, because they’re terrified right now.”

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.


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