Posted March 19, 2013 EST
Townhouses Burn In Garfield
(New Jersey) -
An early morning fire tore through most of a nearly completed row of townhouses under construction in Garfield on March 19th. Limited access, water supply, and an overnight wet snowfall made operations much more challenging. Garfield units were dispatched at 4:49 AM to the Centex Signature Place at 950 River Dr, the former location of Garden State Paper Company. Several townhouse buildings were finished and occupied, but heavy fire was found in a rear structure that was nearing completion. Mutual aid was called immediately as companies initiated an attack. Soon water supply problems began to surface. Relatively small mains in the complex were not able to supply the water needed. As flames took possession of the upper floor and attic space and started to spread to the south end of the building, longer stretches were made into Elmwood Park. Several very large propane tanks were located directly outside the fire building and caused concern. A heavy ember condition also threatened nearby buildings.
An apparent fire wall kept the flames from consuming the northern end of the structure, and after about two hours, the heavy fire was able to be knocked down. Mutual aid units were able to begin returning and heavy equipment was called in to take down the building. No serious injuries were reported. Residents of the adjoining buildings were able to return to their residences. The initial cause of the fire is believed to be a faulty propane heater.
Written and photos by Bill Tompkins
Courtesy of BTFirePhotos - User-Submitted Photo Story