With high winds pushing the wind chill factor into the teens for the first time this season, Paterson firefighters fought a challenging fire for several hours, keeping the flames contained to the original building on December 27th. Shortly after 10:00 PM, units were dispatched to 518 E. 36th Street, on a dead end off of 20th Ave. Heavy smoke and fire was visible inside a large two story commercial building. A second alarm was sounded on arrival, and as conditions deteriorated, a third alarm was called before 10:30. Several explosions were heard from inside the structure, and with several large propane tanks inside, the decision was made quickly to go defensive. Truck 1’s tower was set up on the dead end of E. 36th Street, and a ladder pipe went into operation from Ladder 3 on the E. 35th side. A deck gun and several handlines also operated and all were able to keep the fire from spreading. West Paterson’s tower was special called to the “B” side and was able to hit the flames from across the railroad tracks. Flames, hidden by dense low-lying smoke worked it’s way across the roof area of the building over several hours. Most of the heavy fire was able to be knocked down by about 01:30. Box 54 was called to the scene and crews were rotated out for rehab.
Several hours later, while some units were still at the scene, a two alarm fire was fought by PFD and mutual aid companies on Michigan Ave.
Written and photos by Bill Tompkins
Courtesy of BTFirePhotos - User-Submitted Photo Story