THE BRONX - A raging fire forced hundreds of families to evacuate their apartment building on Creston Avenue Monday evening.

According to fire officials, 15 people, including a firefighter, were injured. One female victim received severe burns.

Flames engulfed the 2435 Creston Ave. high rise shortly after 7 p.m. Fire officials said the blaze started on a fifth-floor staircase. The cause of the fire is under investigation, but officials are calling it ?suspicious.?

Residents were allowed to return to their homes Monday night, but many said they do not feel comfortable going back. Dozens of tenants have been staying outside, breathing fresh air because they claim the air inside the building could be contaminated.

?I remember one of the police officers commented that it?s not safe because it burnt straight to the first layer of paint,? said one concerned tenant, Tasha Torres. ?This building is kind of old - it could be lead.?

Firefighters returned on the scene Tuesday morning, along with clean-up workers, who wore face masks.

For more interviews about the Creston Avenue fire, go to Channel 612 on your iO digital cable box and select iO Extra.