HOLMDEL, NJ - A 3 alarm fire was reported at 6 Barrister drive in Holmdel on Saturday. The property was severely damaged and is now uninhabitable from the event. The family and their two dogs escaped and several members of the response team suffered injuries.
The homeowner reported that they called for help and Holmdel Police were on scene within minutes, attempting to contain the smaller fire which was on the back deck. "Thank God we all got out alive." said the homeowner. Unfortunately, the fire soon grew out of control.
According to a press release referenced by Michael Pigott of the Holmdel Police Department, at approximately 6:54 a.m. the Holmdel Township Police Department received a call from a resident at 6 Barrister Drive that an outdoor kitchen in their backyard was on fire. Officers responded at 7:01 a.m. and were able to evacuate all residents from the home.
Officers on site attempted to knock down the fire with extinguishers and a hose, but were unsuccessful.
Holmdel Fire and Rescue Company #2 was dispatched to the scene. Holmdel Fire and Rescue Command 18269 was in service at 7:02 a.m. and Engine 1880 at 7:07 a.m.
Upon arrival at the scene, Holmdel Fire Command 18269 – which was on location at 7:11 a.m. – and Engine 1880 – which followed closely at 7:15 a.m. – found the home fully engulfed in flames.
Mutual aid was requested from Hazlet, Marlboro, Tinton Falls, Keyport, Union Beach, Colts Neck, Morganville, Manalapan and Middletown fire companies to assist fighting the fire. First Aid units from Holmdel, Hazlet, Keyport, Union Beach and the Monmouth County Mobile Ambulance Bus also arrived on scene and assisted. The responding Fire Departments had the blaze contained about four hours later at approximately 10:50 a.m. Time of arrival for the second and third alarm calls is not yet known. TAPinto submitted an Open Public Records Request to clarify the conflicting reports on response times.
Two firefighters were injured at the scene and treated on location by the Holmdel First Aid, before being transported to Bayshore Medical Center for further evaluation. One sustained injury while falling through the floor fighting the fire, and the second injury was due to smoke inhalation. The home was uninhabitable according to reports . An excavator was requested late afternoon.
The fire is under investigation by the Holmdel Township Police Department, Monmouth County Fire Marshall’s Office, and the Holmdel Fire Prevention Bureau.
As reported, the reports differ on how much time elapsed between when the call for help and the second and third alarms that were called coming on scene. The fire was deemed 'contained' by an official press release from Holmdel Township but the property was sadly destroyed.
Proper support and funding of volunteers and the equipment they require has long been a topic in Holmdel.
Notably, the closest Firehouse on Route 520 had been closed in recent years with residents in that area expressing concerns to the Township Committee about the closure and its impacts.
On a positive note during a very difficult time, classmates of the students in the family quickly sprang into action. With the Holmdel Hornet Hive taking care of their own, an email circulating today by Holmdel High School Senior Jess D’Agostino shares the link below to a gofundme page to support the family, (that includes two Holmdel students). You can share your support the family now by going here: