A Mexican restaurant in Hawthorne suffered extensive damage to its interior on January 20th., but thanks to several factors, it was not as bad as it easily could have been. Members of Hawthorne Engine Co. 3 were painting inside the firehouse at 12:40 AM, when a passerby notified them that there was smoke coming from the La Cantina Restaurant at 142 Goffle Rd., less than a block away. Engine 3 quickly responded as the rest of the department was dispatched. A second alarm was transmitted on arrival as heavy smoke issued from a 1 ½ story frame restaurant. Lines were quickly stretched in the front door and through a basement door at ground level on the Goffle Rd. side.
A third alarm was transmitted as companies searched for the seat of the fire and truck companies opened up. Fire was located in a storage area in the basement and quickly knocked down, but the fire traveled up to the first floor and attic through many voids that had been created by many renovations over the years. It was several hours before the fire could be placed under control. Although there was much interior damage due to the fire and firefighting, the rapid response was a large factor in saving the structure.
Units from North Haledon and Prospect Park assisted at the scene, while Haledon, Glen Rock, and Wyckoff covered the empty firehouses.
Written and photos by Bill Tompkins
Courtesy of BTFirePhotos - User-Submitted Photo Story