NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- People were yelling for help from a fire escape in the Bronx early Monday morning.
Firefighters rescued them as smoke and flames spread through an apartment building.
CBS2's Magdalena Doris was in the Belmont section where tenants were assessing the damage and thanking the FDNY.
Apartment 6C at 2359 Beaumont Ave was charred, destroyed by flames after an early morning fire that started downstairs and engulfed the home that Christina shares with her family.
"Something I never experienced in my life. Now, I know how it feels to be homeless," she said.
Steven's family was rushed to St. Barnabas.
"My mom's is in the hospital. She is there due to smoke," he said.
Five people were treated for smoke inhalation after being rescued from the fire escape.
"I seen kids on the fire escape. I seen a woman on the fire escape yelling, but they got there and they told her to calm down. They escorted her down," Jason Rivera said.
The flames started at 6 a.m. in a second floor apartment. It ripped through every belonging and exposed the skeleton of the unit as it spread to a critical point.
"Anytime you have a fire in the air shaft it's a serious situation," FDNY Deputy Chief Jay Jonas said.
That allowed the fire to travel upward in the six story building, sending residents out onto the fire escape or sheltering inside. it took firefighters only 3 minutes to arrive.
"They did a fantastic job, I want to tell you they came fast. They got up there. They started watering down, breaking walls," Nicholas Misciagna said.
Red Cross said they were helping five adults and two kids find a new place to stay.
The FDNY said the three people who were taken to St. Barnabas Hospital are expected to be okay.
CBS2 has been told that one firefighter was also treated for minor injuries.
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