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EAST ST. LOUIS — A fire broke out in a brick building alongside MetroLink tracks here on Saturday morning, sending four people to the hospital, temporarily halting trains, and forcing firefighters to rescue two from the roof.

Emergency crews responded to 501 St. Louis Avenue, said Derrick Burns, assistant fire chief for the East St. Louis Fire Department.

At 6:45 a.m., Metro Transit stopped the trains that pass near the building, at the request of first responders, said Metro communications manager Jerry Vallely. The fire department had to connect to a hydrant on the opposite side of the tracks.

Four people were taken to the hospital for minor injuries, Burns said.

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Buses transported passengers between 5th & Missouri, Emerson Park and JJK Center stations for part of the day. Trains resumed service at 2:15 p.m., but later dropped to one track.

The cause of the fire was not immediately known. 

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