3 dead, many more injured in NYC building explosion, collapse - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

3 dead, many more injured in NYC building explosion, collapse in East Harlem, police say

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More than 160 firefighters were battling a five-alarm blaze after a deadly explosion and partial building collapse in New York City's East Harlem neighborhood.

Three people are dead and more than 20 people were injured in the collapse.  Authorities say more than a dozen are missing, but they're not sure how many of them may have been in the apartment buildings when the explosion took place.  The extent of the injuries were not immediately clear.

The building is located around Park Avenue between 114th and 117th streets, which is north of Central Park. The explosion was heard for miles around, and smoke was billowing high above the city in the mid-morning hours.

Residents reported hearing a large explosion in an apartment building around 9 a.m. One resident who lived next door to the collapsed building reported smelling a strong odor of gas Tuesday night.

"The whole building shook," a worker at a nearby travel store told the New York Post. "I think people must be injured. I see a lot of smoke."

Smoke from the fire in the residential building could be seen in midtown. Video footage shows fire crews fighting the fire and ambulances could be seen lined up on nearby streets.

Caregivers at a nearby daycare center said children heard the explosion and staffers told Fox News they immediately thought of the 9/11 terror attacks that shook the other end of Manhattan more than a dozen years ago. 

"I heard a big explosion, Boom!...I made sure my coworker was OK," one witness said. 

Metro-North Rail Road is reporting that the Harlem Line Service into and out of Grand Central Terminal is temporarily delayed until further notice due to police activity, MyFoxNY.com reported.

The fire appears to be limited to the one building, but debris could be seen from blocks away. Some of those injured may have been hit by falling debris, reports said.

Story from FOX News and the Associated Press.

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