The four boys and three girls, siblings ranging in age from 5 to 15, were in upstairs bedrooms when the fire swept up from the first floor shortly after midnight in Brooklyn's south-central Midwood section, New York Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said. It was apparently started by a faulty hotplate keeping food hot for Sabbath. The children's 45-year-old mother and one of her daughters — a 14-year-old, police say — jumped out of windows to escape; they were in critical condition at a hospital, being treated for burns and smoke inhalation. "This is the largest tragedy by fire that this city has had in seven years," Nigro said. "It's a tragedy for this family. … It's a tragedy for our city."