THE BRONX - A fast-moving fire destroyed five apartments and three businesses along City Island Avenue Tuesday morning, leaving tenants homeless and owners devastated.

Neighbors say they were awakened by the sound of sirens at around 3 a.m. Many residents came out of their homes to see if they could help put out the flames, but it was too late. According to fire officials, 20 fire units and 75 firefighters were needed to get the two-alarm blaze under control.

Vinny Daddario says the smoke was so thick that his brother-in-law, who lived in one of the affected buildings, could not even rescue his dog.

?He tried to run inside to save his dog, [but] he couldn't even get in there,? Daddario says.

As a result of the blaze, three people were taken to Lincoln Hospital with minor injuries. The Red Cross will be helping those tenants whose apartments were destroyed by the fire.

Neighbors say the City Island community is very close-knit, and they plan to do whatever they can to help those people who were impacted by the fire.