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3 dead in New Year’s Eve blaze

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CORONA (PIX11) -- Three people are dead and at least one firefighter is injured after flames ripped through a high-rise apartment complex in Queens on New Year's Eve, FDNY said.

The fire began about 15 minutes before midnight at the building located at 96-02 57th Ave.

"We didn't think much of it until maybe 20 minutes later after the ball dropped on the news and everything," one resident said. "We opened up the door and the apartment was filled with smoke."

Authorities said all four victims were taken to a hospital, where three of them died.

The victims have been identified as Louise Jean-Charles, 59; Nadia Donnay, 37; and Napoleon Michael, 69, NYPD said. They all lived in the same ninth-floor apartment, police said.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.