Chinatown Blaze Injures 27

Monday, Apr 12, 2010  |  Updated 8:48 PM EDT
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A 7-alarm fire rips through a Chinatown building.

A 7-alarm fire rips through a Chinatown building.

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Twenty-four firefighters and three civilians were injured when a seven-alarm fire broke out in Manhattan’s Lower East Side Chinatown neighborhood Sunday night, an official with the New York Fire Department told NBCNewYork.

And fire officials said there is an 83-year-old man who is still unaccounted for.

At least 250 firefighters battled the massive blaze which began around 10 p.m. Sunday at 285 Grand Street. It  was put under control at 2:15 a.m., the official said.  Two dozen firefighters were injured, one had his hands burned, officials said.

Fire Chief Edward Kilduff  said two elderly residents were hospitalized in critical condition with smoke inhalation and a third was being evaluated.

The blaze could be seen as far away as the Brooklyn Bridge. The NYPD arson team is investigating.

Officials say the fire started on the first floor of the mixed residential and commercial building and spread through a shaft to the roof before affecting two other buildings. It burned for four hours before being put under control, officials said.

The Red Cross is helping the 50 to 60 families that were displaced, officials said.

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