Updated 1/1/11 – 9:39 p.m.

ROBBINS, Ill. (CBS) — Four kids were rescued from an extra-alarm blaze at a public housing complex in south suburban Robbins.

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The 3-alarm fire started at 5:22 p.m. on South Grace Avenue at the 2-story brick project row houses at 13954 S. Grace Av. before spreading next door to the vacant 13952 S. Grace Av., a Robbins fire dispatcher said. It was under control at 6:31 p.m.

Four children under 15 years old were rescued from a bedroom and a man and woman were rescued from the living room, Robbins Deputy Fire Chief Gavin McCoy said.

An overloaded circuit in the living room started the fire, which spread to a Christmas tree, McCoy said. Oxygen that rushed in when the woman opened a door flared the flames which also caught on the drapes and wall.

The man suffered burns to his hand and ears as he was trying to get the children out, McCoy said. The children and women suffered smoke inhalation and all six people were taken to MetroSouth Medical Center in Blue Island in “stable” condition.

It was initially believed that the man set the house on fire and had also accidentally set himself on fire, but McCoy said state investigators have determined the fire was an accidental electrical fire.

The fire was first called in by a neighbor and at least 30 fire personnel were on the scene, McCoy said.

The fire was out by 7 p.m.

(The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report)

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