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story.lead_photo.caption Firefighters battle a fire at the Southwest Inn on Friday in Houston. A fire that engulfed a Houston motel has injured at least six firefighters, including two critically, and three people are missing.

HOUSTON — Authorities say four firefighters are dead after trying to battle a fire that engulfed a Houston motel along a busy expressway.

The Houston mayor's office released a statement saying the four firefighters were killed Friday after a blaze broke out at the Southwest Inn. The local medical examiner's office says three victims died at the scene, while the fourth died at a hospital.

Five others were injured and are hospitalized for chest pains or leg injuries.

The blaze broke out just after noon Friday at a restaurant and club at the motel along U.S. 59, one of Houston's most heavily traveled expressways. Flames spread to the motel and were shooting from the roof before firefighters extinguished the blaze about two hours later.

The fire's cause hasn't been released.

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