Hundreds Displaced After L.I. Blaze

Friday, Jul 22, 2011  |  Updated 11:28 AM EDT
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Hundreds Displaced After L.I. Blaze

NBCNewYork

The electrical fire started in the basement and quickly spread, authorities said.

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Nearly 400 people are without homes after a fire broke out in a large residential building on Long Island, police say.

The fire started as an electrical fire in the basement of the Hempstead building and spread to two apartments on the first floor, severely damaging the structure, authorities said.

All residents were evacuated and had to stand outside in intense heat. Police helped some of the residents into patrol cars to escape the blistering temperatures.

Three MTA buses were also called in to help.

The Office of Emergency Management and the Red Cross is helping the displaced residents, who likely won't be able to return to their homes for some time, authorities said.

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