Fire leaves 11 homeless

August 26, 2012 Updated Aug 26, 2012 at 7:02 PM EDT

By WKBW Admin

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August 26, 2012 Updated Aug 26, 2012 at 7:02 PM EDT


Buffalo, NY (WKBW) - One of 11 residents left homeless after a fire charred through two Buffalo businesses on Saturday is speaking out.

A distraught Deborah McQueen sits outside of her home, telling Eyewitness News "I feel like we've been reduced to zero."

She adds "I mean, I'm homeless. I'm sitting here right now and I'm homeless."

McQueen's home sat next to the auto repair shop at Bailey and Hewitt that caught fire Saturday afternoon. That shop and another nearby building are destroyed. Two more were damaged.

McQueen says "everything is saturated with water, we have absolutely nothing."

Fire officials tell Eyewitness News a faulty generator may be to blame.

Alisha McCain lives across the street, and tells Eyewitness News she "heard a big boom and the garage door blew off and flames were almost across the street."

Several people from the area question why firefighters weren't on the scene sooner.

Reverend Calvin Fitzgerald said "it's a weird feeling -- it's right across the street from the fire department."

Fire officials tell Eyewitness News, the crew was actually heading to another call. They saw the fire and stopped to put it out.

While everyone in the buildings made it out okay, at least three firefighters were taken to ECMC with minor injuries. The division chief says firefighters were treated for heat exhaustion and burns.

However, those closest to the fire remain grateful. McQueen says "we are all living, that's the best thing. We're here."