NEW YORK : A fire raced through a motel in the Jersey Shore town of Point Pleasant Beach early on Friday, killing three people and critically injuring three others, the Ocean County prosecutor said. Bodies were pulled from the scorched ruins of the Mariner’s Cove Motor Inn, said Al Della Fave, spokesman for the prosecutor’s office. The fire was reported just after 5:30 am and was out within a few hours.

“They are in the rescue and recovery phase, going room to room to be sure everyone is out of the structure,” Della Fave told Reuters. Mariner’s Cove Motor Inn is a two-story motel with a large swimming pool near Cooks Creek, a narrow waterway that connects the Manasquan River to Lake Louise, in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey.

The seaside town is a popular destination for millions of sun-worshippers who flock to the New Jersey beachcommunity every summer.

The cause of the fire was unknown and under investigation, said Della Fave.