Hawthorne house fire displaces at least two
HAWTHORNE – No injuries were reported in a house fire Monday on Hawthorne Avenue that has temporarily displaced at least two tenants, authorities said. Firefighters with a ladder truck battled flames from the second floor after being called to the scene at about 2 p.m.
A tenant said that she had discovered the house was filling up with smoke and that she had been powerless to call the police or fire department for help.
“Smoke came into my house and I went to call the Fire Department and the phone didn’t work,” said the woman, who asked that her name be withheld. The second-floor tenant was not at home when the fire started, authorities confirmed.
As she fled out the front porch door in the cold rain with just slippers for shoes, she found good Samaritans ready to assist.
A North Haledon man visiting his son on a nearby street had also observed the smoke and he was there to help her in getting to safety, after telling his son to call police.
“It’s the best way to start the new year if you can help someone,” said Harold Hernandez, who has experience as a Red Cross volunteer.
“Thank God, someone called,” said the woman, huddled under a blanket but with a flood of support from neighbors as she watched firefighters making sure the fire was extinguished at 195 Hawthorne Ave. Extensive damage was evident on the right side of the home toward the driveway.
The fire was quickly brought under control according to Asst Chief Peter Van Der Velde of Fire Company Number Four. Members did an excellent job working to contain and extinguish the blaze according to the Asst Chief.
Hawthorne Police Capt. Jeffrey Vanderhook said at the scene that it was too early to determine the cause of the fire, which the fire inspector was looking into.
“I don’t believe it’s suspicious,” Vanderhook added.
Fire companies from Hawthorne and nearby Glen Rock, Wyckoff, North Haledon and Prospect Park responded to cover the borough as did ambulance crews, and the departments ladies Auxiliary which stood by in case of injuries and for rehab.
This was the townships second serious fire in less than a week displacing five families in total.