Dramatic footage has recently emerged of girls jumping from the balcony of a New Jersey dance studio in order to escape a raging building blaze. The incident took place on Monday when a fire broke out in the studio and nearby businesses. Prior to the video being recorded, rescuers believed the building had been completely evacuated.

Horrifyingly, this was not the case, and the girls trapped inside had to think quickly as flames tore through the building. Knowing that their lives were on the line, they fled to the balcony and dangled from its railings for as long as they could before letting go and falling to the ground.

Watch the dramatic footage for yourself in the video below:

Recounting the girls’ decision to jump for their lives, Edgewater Mayor Michael McPartland said, “It was one of the bravest things I’ve ever seen.”

After realizing that the girls were trapped inside, Edgewater Police Sgt. James Dalton and bystander Tony Nehmi can be seen in the video climbing up a ladder to help them. “The girl was so scared,” Nehmi said. “Crying, screaming. It was horrible.”

Dalton and Nehmi rescued the last two girls trapped in the building by smashing one of its windows. The rest all escaped via the balcony.

Thankfully, There were no fatalities and no one was seriously injured in the fire, although 15 people were taken to hospital for treatment for minor injuries.

The fire broke out around 7 pm local time, however, its cause was still unknown later on Monday evening.

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