Fire at Brick Housing Authority Apartment Building Forces Evacuation of Elderly Tenants

BRICK TOWNSHIP, NJ – Police in Brick reported that 59 residents of the township operated low-income housing project had to be evacuated after a fire started in the kitchen of one of the third-floor apartments.
Brick Poice reported that a 1:56 P.M. on Saturday they received a call from a resident on the third floor of George Conway Towers on Chambers Bridge Rd. The caller reported hearing a smoke alarm sounding from a neighbor’s unit and smelled smoke.
The building is a five-story apartment complex home to mostly senior citizens.
A release issued by the department detailed the incident:
Police Sgt. Mike Feeney and Ptl. Rich Zimmerer were the first two officers to reach the burning apartment. The officers forced the door open but were forced back by a heavy smoke condition in the unit. They awaited the arrival of Fire Fighters who entered the apartment, who found the resident in the apartment and carried her to safety. Other firefighters entered and extinguished the fire.
Breton Woods, Pioneer Hose, Laurelton, and Herbertsville Fire Companies responded to fight the 3 alarm fire while all police officers on shift responded to help evacuate residents. Brick Township Police EMS set up triage and treatment zones. Mutual aid from Point Pleasant Fire Department, Silverton Fire Department, and Point Pleasant EMS responded to assist.
Residents from the second and third floors were evacuated, 59 people in all. Residents on the first, fourth, and fifth floors were advised to shelter in place as the fire was quickly controlled and extinguished. The only injury sustained was to the resident who was rescued by firefighters. The resident, a 75-year-old female was transported to Ocean Medical Center for treatment. No other injuries were reported. Emergency units remained on scene for approximately 2 ½ hours before allowing the majority of residents back into the building.
Fire inspectors determined that the fire started in the kitchen however the cause is still under investigation by the Brick Fire Bureau and Brick Police Detectives.
Bureau of Fire Safety Chief Kevin Batzel and Police Chief James Riccio commended the actions of all the First Responders involved stating that if not for the exceptional way in which they responded and handled the incident there could have undoubtedly been many injuries or loss of life and a greater deal of property damage.
Photos by Brick Police Department.