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Fire at Penn Station construction site early Tuesday leads to LIRR delays and cancellations

An electrical fire at a Penn Station construction site Tuesday morning shut down several train platforms and caused delays and cancellations during the morning rush, officials said.

By late Tuesday afternoon, repairs had been made to the four tracks that had been shut down, said officials with the Long Island Rail Road.

The electrical fire broke out in an area with temporary wiring used to light the construction site, an FDNY spokesman said.

The blaze ignited at the west end concourse, which will remain closed until further notice, LIRR spokesman Aaron Donovan said.

The platforms were reopened by Tuesday afternoon, Donovan said.

Westbound trains on three branches were canceled in Jamaica or diverted to Atlantic Terminal or Hunterspoint Avenue after the fire, which broke out at 2:22 a.m., officials said.

Trains on the Babylon, Hempstead and West Hempstead branches were among those delayed or canceled during the morning commute.

The fire spread over two levels of the construction site on the west end concourse, at West 33rd Street and Eighth Avenue, The Associated Press reported. Hours later, smoke still permeated the area around the rail hub located near Madison Square Garden and the James Farley Post Office building.

More than 150 firefighters responded. Two firefighters suffered minor injuries, the AP said. The fire was under control at 5:22 a.m., officials said.

With Patricia Kitchen

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