BALTIMORE — Fire officials say a blaze in southwest Baltimore has killed a woman and two children and damaged nearly a dozen homes.

Fire department spokesman Chief Kevin Cartwright says the fire broke out about 1:30 a.m. Thursday in a home in the 600 block of South Pulaski Street and spread to 10 others.

Cartwright says a woman and two children were found dead inside the home where the fire began. They have not been identified.

At 7:30 a.m., the block was cordoned off and nearby residents stood outside, talking and hugging each other. Neighbors say they were awakened by people banging on their doors to alert them of the fire.

The cause of the three-alarm fire is under investigation.