The flames were raging when FDNY crews first arrived just before midnight late Friday night.
It took more than 200 firefighters several hours to knock the fire down, CBS2’s Christina Fan reported, but they were eventually able to put the flames out.
Investigators believe the fire started in a hair salon on the first floor of a three-story building near 37th Avenue and Main Street.
Watch Christina Fan’s report —
Firefighters said the flames spread to two adjacent buildings, which they said made the fire more difficult to knock down and resulted in a partial roof collapse in one building.
“It is a very significant fire. Seventh alarm requires a lot of man power,” FDNY Battalion Chief Paul Miller said. “It was very stubborn.”
Several businesses – including a pharmacy, a restaurant and the hair salon – were either damaged or destroyed, CBS2’s Kiran Dhillon reports.
One of the impacted buildings is home to a dance studio.
“We’ve been coming here for many months now for ballroom dancing,” one woman said. “It’s one of the only studios around here, so it’s kind of a big deal.”
— FDNY (@FDNY) January 9, 2021
No one was believed to be inside any of the buildings during the fire, but seven firefighters were injured and taken to a local hospital with minor injuries.
Kevin Zou, a patron of the hair salon and pharmacy, says he feels for the business owners.
“I’m heartbroken, especially right now, with the pandemic, everyone is barely surviving,” he said.
Meanwhile, fire crews will remain on the scene until Sunday morning.
“To make sure the building stability is maintained, so it doesn’t deteriorate any further,” Miller said. “And at that point, there’ll probably be an interagency meeting with Department of Buildings, OEM, to determine what’s gonna happen.”
The FDNY says right now, the cause of the fire remains under investigation.
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CBS2’s Christina Fan and Kiran Dhillon contributed to this report.