ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, NJ  - A fast response from the Atlantic Highlands Fire Department brought a fire today quickly under control at 73 First Avenue.  Witnesses saw flames and thick black smoke billowing from the roof of the building around 12:47 p.m.  Police responding to the scene located the fire on the second floor roof of Little Italy Restaurant on the Railroad Avenue side of the building.  Officers evacuated occupants of the building and surrounding buildings.

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Atlantic Highalnds Fire Department ladder on First Avenue extended to the roof of Little Italy Pizzeria.

The Atlantic Highlands First Aid Squad responded, treating three building occupants for minor smoke inhalation at the scene. They refused to be transported to the hospital. 

Atlantic Highlands Fire Marshall Martin Hawley said the fire was accidental in nature.  The fire originated on the roof of the building.  He said, "careless smoking cannot be ruled out."  

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The rear of Little Italy Pizzeria on Railroad Avenue

The Atlantic Highlands Fire Department responded with mutual aid assistance from Middletown Township Fire Department companies; Community Fire Company, Brevent Park Fire Company, both of Leonardo, Belford Engine and Belford Independent Fire Co. and the Middletown Township Fire Department Air Unit as well as the Highlands Fire Department.  Atlantic Highlands First Aid Squad and Highlands First Aid were also on scene.   Detective Sergeant Thomas Stone, Patrolman Brian Phair and Patrolman Scott Reinert responded to the call.

The fire was declared under control at 1:12 p.m. by Deputy Fire Chief Thomas Porter of the Atlantic Highlands Fire Dept.