Police say three people are dead, and 15 others are hospitalized for various injuries following a fire at a seniors' building in Toronto.

Paramedic spokesman Peter Rotolo said Saturday that four people were in critical condition after the Friday afternoon blaze. Three people have been pronounced dead.

Rotolo says paramedics and firefighters pulled residents from apartments on the top floor of the five-story building.

A fire department spokesman says some of the seniors were brought down ladders because the hallways were too full of smoke.

Police commander Bob O'Halloran says the origin of the fire remains under investigation.