Fire Guts New York Building, Damages 2 Others

February 26, 2010

Authorities say a fire has destroyed a century-old building and heavily damaged two neighboring structures in a western New York city’s downtown business district.

Fire officials in Dunkirk say everyone inside the buildings made it out safely, including more than 30 young children in a gymnastics class being in the 105-year-old building where the fire started.

Chautauqua County government offices in the buildings were also successfully evacuated.

Officials say the fire was reported around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday in the former Masonic Temple building in downtown Dunkirk, on Lake Erie 33 miles southwest of Buffalo.

It took more than 100 firefighters several hours to extinguish the blaze.

Officials say the cause of the fire is under investigation.

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