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9/11 Memorial Briefly Evacuated After Fire Breaks Out Nearby, Officials Say

By Julie Shapiro | December 26, 2012 12:03pm | Updated on December 26, 2012 1:11pm

LOWER MANHATTAN — The 9/11 Memorial was evacuated briefly Wednesday morning after a fire broke out nearby, sending smoke billowing over the World Trade Center site, officials and witnesses said.

The fire started in a construction trailer near the memorial just before 11:30 a.m. and soon spread to two adjacent trailers, the FDNY and Port Authority said.

Twenty-five units with 100 firefighters responded and brought the blaze under control about 12:20 p.m., the FDNY said.

No injuries were reported, officials said.

The construction trailer that caught fire served as an office for Master Mechanics, a company that greases the site's cranes, the Port Authority said. There may have been some oil or grease in the trailer, the agency said.

The cause of the fire was under investigation, officials said.

The 9/11 Memorial was evacuated "as a precaution" as clouds of smoke spread across the site but reopened half an hour later, about 12:15 p.m., a memorial spokesman said.

A visitor to the memorial, @Loredo210, tweeted, "got all the way through security at 9/11 memorial - then it caught on fire and we got evacuated."

"Fire at 9/11 memorial. Eerie," tweeted @NicStone.