updated 10/21/2005 11:03:37 AM ET 2005-10-21T15:03:37

An apparent electrical fire in a subway storage room produced heavy smoke, forcing the evacuation of a busy Manhattan station and disrupting rush hour service for thousands, authorities said.

There were no immediate reports of injuries, but the fire at the West Fourth Street station was still burning more than an hour later, said police Capt. Stephen Hughes.

The fire forced the suspension of service in both directions on seven train lines along the Sixth and Eighth avenue corridors, said NYC Transit spokesman James Anyansi. West Fourth Street is a major subway hub along Manhattan’s West Side.

The smoke rose through street grates, causing a heavy smoke condition at street level as well, said David Billig, a fire department spokesman.

More than 100 firefighters and 25 pieces of fire equipment were at the scene, he said. The cause of the fire, reported at 8:05 a.m., was not immediately known.

A fire in January that damaged a signal room knocked out service to two of the same lines for days.

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