Fire Guts New Jersey House

A fire destroyed a 2 1/2 story wood frame home at 272 Jefferson St. on Friday, July 10. An alert neighbor phoned 9-1-1 at approximately 10:30a.m. to report the fire.

Initial police unit on the scene reported heavy fire on the first floor. Firefighters also found fire on the second floor as well as the utility pole and wires.

With the fire rapidly advancing and possible exposure problems on the "B" and "D" sides, a second-alarm was issued by the incident commander.

Several two-and-a-half-inch hand lines and Engine 4's deck gun were put into operation with an aggressive exterior attack. Crews then entered the structure with inch-and-a- half lines to continue their advance on the fire.

As crews made steady progress on the lower floors, heavy fire erupted once again, but this time it was traveling the cock loft. Command issued the order to evacuate all personnel from the building as the possibility of an overhead collapse became imminent.

Companies went into a defensive exterior attack, once again utilizing Engine 4's deck gun, several ground master streams and an aerial stream from Ladder 2. The fire was placed under control in just over two hours.

Although the fire was believed to have reportedly originated on the lower floors, the instability of the structure was hindering the investigation at the time of this writing.

The first floor was reported to be vacant by officials. The three people living on the second floor were relocated by the American Red Cross. No injuries were reported.

An investigation is underway.