At least six New Jersey firefighters suffered non-life threatening injuries while battling a massive inferno Friday, officials said.
Keyport Mayor Harry Aumack told NJ.com that firefighters and utility workers were still battling the blaze in the Jersey Shore town’s business district more than four hours after it started.
At least three buildings were lost in the fire, said Charles Webster, a spokesman for the Monmouth County Prosecutors Office.
The firefighters were being treated at Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel.
The smoke began to fill the air around the area around 4 p.m. The fire tore through the structures, which houses five businesses, eventually causing a wall to collapse. Aumack told the website that one of the buildings contained an apartment. Luckily, the people that occupied it made it out safely.
Webster said about 200 firefighters responded to the blaze.
Aumack said the departments’ quick response to the fire prevented causing more destruction in the area. He said that high winds and a ruptured gas line have hampered efforts to battle the flames.
"It was really serious. With that wind it'll leap building to building. We stopped it at the firewall. That's why our ladder was right there. That was on purpose," he said.
Aumack said if the fire would’ve breached the wall, the blaze would’ve continued down the line of buildings on one of the town’s main streets.
The Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office and the Keyport fire bureau are investigating the blaze, according to NJ.com.