UPDATE: Three adults and two children were hospitalized as a fierce fire roared through the upper floors of a mixed-use building in Passaic late Wednesday afternoon, Mayor Hector Carlos Lora said.
Flames blew out the second-floor windows in the middle of three brick buildings that each house street-level businesses off the corner of Main and Harrison avenues.
Being treated at St. Mary's Hospital for smoke inhalation were five victims, Lora said: A 65-year-old woman, another woman in her 40s, a 19-year-old man and two children.
Firefighters contained the blaze to the single building, the mayor noted.
Hoarding conditions complicated the task, however, and they were eventually forced out of the building, responders said.
The fire began as a two-alarmer shortly after 3:30 p.m., went to three alarms within minutes and then hit four bells soon after. Area streets were closed.
Firefighters from Carlstadt, Garfield, East Rutherford, Rutherford, Paterson and Clifton were among the mutual aid responders, Lora said.
The fire was declared under control just after 6 p.m.
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