A three-alarm fire severely damaged a strip mall in North Long Beach Saturday and three firefighters suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

The firefighters were summoned at 4:28 a.m. to the strip mall in the 5600 block of Atlantic Avenue, according to Long Beach Firefighter-Paramedic Brian Fisk.

The first arriving units saw heavy smoke and flames on the roof of the strip mall and called for a second-alarm response, Fisk said. A third-alarm response was called when it was determined the blaze could only be fought from the outside in defensive mode and 20-25 firefighters would be needed in total.

The flames were out about 5:20 a.m., according to an LBFD post on Instagram.

The cause of the blaze remained under investigation and the damage assessment was not yet complete, Fisk said. “A few businesses won’t be able to reopen anytime soon,” he noted.

Two firefighters were hospitalized for treatment of minor burns and one was treated for heat-related illness, Fisk said. The burned firefighters were released Saturday and the third firefighter was expected to be released during the day. Each was expected to make a full recovery.

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