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3 firefighters hurt in fire at Bernie’s Auto Body

Three firefighters suffered minor injuries battling a blaze that destroyed a commercial auto repair shop in East Patchogue Monday, officials said.

The firefighters all were taken to Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center in East Patchogue. One suffered a back injury, another an elbow injury. The third injury was not immediately known.

The department affiliations were not known, either.

Volunteers from Hagerman, Bellport and Patchogue battled the fire at Bernie’s Auto Body on Montauk Highway.

The cause of the blaze, reported in a 911 call at 2:50 a.m., is under investigation by the Suffolk police Arson Squad.

Officials initially confirmed the address as that belonging to Suffolk Collision Specialists, located a few hundred feet west of Bernie’s on Montauk Highway at the intersection with Kane Avenue. The owner of Suffolk Collision, Richard Clark, said he was surprised to see reports that his business had been damaged — and said it hadn’t been and was still open for business Tuesday.

“We’ve got a state-of-the-art building here,” Clark said. “If there’d been a fire here, they would have known about it a minute after it started.”

Due to incorrect information confirmed by authorities, the original story wrongly identified the fire as having occurred at Suffolk Collision Specialists. The fire happened at Bernie’s Auto Body on Montauk Highway.

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