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High-Rise Fire Guts Times Square Restaurant, Sends Black Smoke Billowing Into Air

A three-alarm fire tore through a Times Square restaurant Tuesday morning, spreading to a nearby building and sending thick smoke billowing into the streets of the Crossroads of the World. 

One firefighter and one civilian suffered minor injuries in the blaze that broke out around 5 a.m. at the 11-story high-rise on Seventh Avenue, officials said. According to fire authorities, the fire started in the duct work of TSQ Brasserie, a ground-floor restaurant, and spread to a building behind it on 48th Street.

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Smoke rose above Times Square during the fire.

Video posted to social media showed bright orange flames leaping from the buildings before dawn. Fire officials said it took more than two hours to get the blaze under control. The extent of the damage wasn't clear, but the restaurant appeared decimated. The building on 48th Street was also heavily damaged, but not completely destroyed, fire officials said. 

The cause is under investigation.

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Smoke was a concern throughout the morning and the Office of Emergency Management warned people to stay inside to avoid exposure.

Traffic delays were also expected in the area. Several city bus lines were being detoured as the morning commute got underway.  

A fire broke out in a high-rise in Times Square early Tuesday morning. 
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