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Fire breaks out at Washington Heights apartment building, at least 17 injured

WASHINGTON HEIGHTS, Manhattan — Emergency crews battled a massive fire in Washington Heights for hours Monday, officials said.

The blaze broke out at 775 Riverside Dr., the location of a multi-story apartment building. FDNY said flames were on the second floor.

It had escalated to a seven-alarm fire by 5:50 p.m. Firefighters had difficulties with the blaze because of the weather.

At least 17 people were injured in the blaze, the FDNY tweeted. None of the injuries are life threatening.

Officials believe the fire was started by a woman making toast in her kitchen. The fire spread to the top floors of the building through a dumbwaiter shaft.

Dozens of residents have been affected, Red Cross officials said. They anticipate around 100 residents will be affected. It's not clear if they'll be able to sleep in their own homes.

Monday's fire comes amid a busy two weeks for the Red Cross in NYC, Long Island and the Lower Hudson Valley. Since Christmas, the Red Cross has helped nearly 700 New Yorkers affected by more than 150 local disasters.

Additional details were not immediately available.