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Workers likely caused 5-alarm blaze in Hempstead apartment building: Fire Marshal

Posted at 2:56 PM, Feb 19, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-19 22:13:13-05

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (PIX11) -- Hundreds of people have been displaced after a 5-alarm fire tore through a Hempstead apartment building Thursday afternoon.

The massive blaze was on multiple floors of the housing complex at 100 Terrace Ave. Fire officials say the wind contributed to the fire spreading.

Approximately 450 people had to be evacuated. The Red Cross is assisting residents with temporary housing, food, blankets and clothing.

Officials say a portion of the building will be uninhabitable due to fire and water damage.

One resident suffered a minor injury.

Nassau County Assistant Chief Fire Marshal Michael Uttaro says firefighters found plumbers tools in the building in a vacant apartment where the fire is believed to have started on the second floor. He the fire may have been started by plumbers using torches.

The fire remains under investigation.