Fire burns several homes on Staten Island

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NEW YORK (AP) -- Over 200 firefighters are battling a fire in Staten Island that has spread to several homes.

The blaze began just after 6 p.m. Thursday in a three-story house on Benzinger Avenue in St. George. The fire then spread to two neighboring homes. Residents in the area were advised to avoid heavy smoke conditions by closing windows.

Fire officials say heat from the heavy fire melted siding on buildings across the street.

So far, 10 firefighters have suffered minor injuries.