New Jersey Firefighters Respond to 'Devil's Night' Fires

Oct. 30, known by many cities as "Mischief Night."

In Camden, N.J., it is known as "Devil's Night." But for the last few years it has been very quiet including this year.

Shortly after 7 p.m., calls were received for a dwelling fire at 516 Stevens St., in the center city section of the city. Firefighters reported that they had heavy smoke and fire conditions in a two-story brick, middle of the row, occupied dwelling.

The homeowners had placed steel gates and bars on the porch and windows to protect themselves from harm. This was almost a fatal mistake, as the home owners were unable to exit the blazing dwelling. During their attempt, two of the children were injured. A one-year old who suffered burns and smoke inhalation and another child with smoke inhalation were transported to Camden Cooper Hospital Trauma Center by Camden EMS Unit.

Firefighters were able to advance three lines into the second floor of the dwelling containing the fire to two rear bedrooms. The blaze was placed under control in about 20 minutes.

During a secondary search, Firefighter Ray Otero, of Engine Co. 8 found a small dog under a bed in one of the rear bedrooms.

It was a wonder that he was still alive due to the heavy smoke and fire conditions. The owner and her daughter were extremely thrilled that the firefighters were able to save their dog. With tears in their eyes, they were thanking Otero for his actions.

More than 50 residents on the block had fled their smoke-filled homes but were able to return a few hours later. Firefighters contained the fire to the one dwelling.

The only other action during "Devils Night" was a huge rubbish pile in the rear of a warehouse on South 6th Street which had the sky lit up for over an hour.

Units Responding

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