Fire, Explosions Rock New Jersey Gas Warehouse

00:49 hours on 4-19-04, the Pleasant Plains Fire Department & Silverton Fire Department responded to a well involved structural fire, located at 1992 Lakewood Road, Toms River, New Jersey, commonly known as Oxygen Supply Company.

Upon Arrival heavy fire was seen coming from the roof of oxygen supply. The building was a 52' X 200' wood frame warehouse. Crews went directly into a defensive operation, requested Berkley Haz mat, and a crash truck from Navy Lakehurst. Three master streams were put into service from E-3051, L-3065, E-2905, but not before many explosions, such as the one pictured, rocked the surrounding area. Mutual aid was requested for another tower ladder and a heavy rescue from Toms River # 1 & 2. Approximately 125 firefighters with 30 pieces of apparatus battled the blaze for almost 4 hours, until it was under control. Overhaul operations lasted almost 8 hours, due to an elementary school almost 100 yards away. Almost 300 oxygen, nitrous, acetylene, argon, helium, hydrogen, and various other bottles were compromised by either heat or the collapse of the building.

Only one firefighter was injured, diving for cover during one of the explosions. Explosions were felt as far as 20 miles away, in the Whiting area of Ocean County. Approximately 750,000 gallons of water and over 2000 gallons of foam were used to suppress the fire.

Mutual aid was provided by:

  • Silverton Fire Department
  • Manchester Fire Dept
  • Berkley Haz-Mat
  • Lakewood Fire Dept.
  • Ocean County Fire Coordinators
  • Ocean County Fire Marshal's Foam Bank
  • Toms River Fire # 1 & 2
  • Brick Fire Department
  • Navy Lakehurst Fire Dept
  • Dover Township OEM

BLS was provided by:

  • Pleasant Plains
  • Silverton
  • Toms River
  • Dover Police EMS
  • Dover Township Bureau of Fire Prevention
  • Ocean County Prosecutors Office
  • Dover Township Police Department
  • Ocean County Fire Marshal
  • NJ Department of Enviormental Protection

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