Middlesex County News

Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Piscataway Home; Resident Survives with 2nd Degree Burns

02a403669fd3ec076840_IMG_1654.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Piscataway Home; Resident Survives with 2nd Degree Burns Credits: New Market Fire Department
f32e1b550240c45621a5_IMG_1655.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Piscataway Home; Resident Survives with 2nd Degree Burns Credits: New Market Fire Department
0dc1c444b9302314fe55_IMG_1618.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway Credits: Kenneth Simmons
7e7247617e541b0510a0_IMG_1653.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway Credits: Kenneth Simmons
c3b8e6facd71f3c8b9a3_IMG_1627.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway Credits: Kenneth Simmons
f8c8a7736c438bc1dd20_IMG_1596.JPG
Mayor Brian Wahler debriefs reporters on house explosion investigation Credits: Kenneth Simmons
5368b8446d9e4aca1a2d_IMG_1608.JPG
Pastor Roy Carroll of the Living Hope Outreach Center (right) Credits: Kenneth Simmons
bb5353d5a7d774612b1a_IMG_1638.JPG
A police officer interviews neighbors about the explosion Credits: Kenneth Simmons
3a8b057faa13b8781ec4_IMG_1629.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway Credits: Kenneth Simmons
4fdcc0bf80b8e77e987c_IMG_1631.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway Credits: Kenneth Simmons
fc5e37076b4037223dd9_IMG_1637.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway Credits: Kenneth Simmons
08505b3cf927f15fcadb_IMG_1639.JPG
Credits: Kenneth Simmons
83ced87a8d9816b1dd47_IMG_1642.JPG
Credits: Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway
71ad8395712f848714d1_IMG_1651.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway Credits: Kenneth Simmons
2d1372e68e2bc5da71f8_IMG_1652.JPG
Pre-Dawn Explosion Levels Home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Ave in Piscataway Credits: Kenneth Simmons
02a403669fd3ec076840_IMG_1654.JPG

PISCATAWAY, NJ -- A Piscataway man is lucky to be alive after an apparent gas explosion and fire leveled his home at the corner of Stelton Road and Hopkinson Avenue early Sunday morning. 

The explosion, which was first reported by neighbors at about 4:00 a.m., apparently blew the resident into the street where he was found by Piscataway Police who first responded to the scene, said Mayor Brian Wahler.

The man, who is in his early 50s was the only occupant at the time and was transported to St. Barnabas Medical Center for treatment of 2nd degree burns and other injuries. 

Sign Up for E-News

His name is being withheld pending notification of his family. 

"The force of the blast completely leveled the home which was fully engulfed in flames by the time fire fighters arrived on scene," Wahler said, describing how parts of the house flew into other, surrounding homes, causing fire damage to them as well. 

He added that due to the large debris field, "We'll have the building inspectors out here checking the surrounding houses for damage. However, PSEG investigated and determined the system was not compromised."

While the official cause has yet to be determined, Wahler said because of the size and magnitude of the explosion, and that the house was literally blown off of its foundation leads investigators to believe this was a gas explosion. 

Units from the New Jersey State Police used a drone to help determine the extent and size of the blast, a critical part in the investigation, said Wahler.

Neighbors reported hearing two loud bangs and several smaller popping sounds in the early morning, pre-dawn hour, waking many from their sleep as their homes shook. One woman road her bike over from the Pleasantview Gardens complex on Carlton Ave., saying she heard and felt the impact from that far away.

Janice, a Hopkinson Avenue neighbor who lives four doors away from the scene said she thought she was hearing fireworks go off when she was awakened to the sounds of a loud bang and several smaller popping noises. "It woke me up from a sound sleep, I thought I was dreaming," she said. "I saw hot ashes hit the roof and then I heard little 'pop, pop, pop' noises here and there."

"It sounded like a bomb went off,"  agreed her sister, Gayle who was visiting from Florida.

"Everybody within a 12-block radius called headquarters," said Mayor Wahler noting how the situation could have been a lot worse if it had happened while people were commuting to work and school along Stelton Road. "The explosion was so massive, that windows were shattered in other buildings, picture frames were knocked off of people's (walls), they felt like it was a mini earthquake."

Pastor Roy Carroll of the Living Hope Outreach Center, located across the street on Stelton Road was getting ready for Sunday services when he first heard of the explosion from reading a Facebook post. He drove to the church to investigate for himself.

"I was shocked that this has happened in the community and am saddened for the family that has been affected by this disaster," said the former postal worker, noting how it was a familiar address because he used to deliver mail along that route. "We pray that everything works out well."

The Stelton Road area between Tabb and Woodrow Avenues will remain closed for the rest of Sunday while the investigation and cleanup continue.

TAPintoPiscataway.net is an online newspaper serving the Township of Piscataway. Sign up for our FREE daily eNews and follow us on Facebook and Twitter @PiscatawayTAP.

Businesses: Advertise with TAPinto Piscataway. Click here for more information.

Download the TAPinto App!   Click here for Android.  Click here for iOS.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Plainfield

Obituaries

South Plainfield – John T. Felz, Jr., 71, passed away at his home on Thursday, June 14, ...
Read more

Letters to the Editor

South Plainfield Special Athletes Have Great Showing in This Year's State Games

June 22, 2018

Tyler is one of many athletes from South Plainfield who competed in this year's State Games, held at the college of New Jersey. This was Tyler's third year competing, but the first year where Tyler won a gold medal in, in both the long jump and mini javelin. We are proud of all the athletes who represented South Plainfield and the coaching staff.

Community Happenings

Mayor, Council Proclaim 'Amateur Radio Week’ in the Borough of South Plainfield

June 22, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ- At a June 18 meeting, South Plainfield Mayor Matt Anesh and the Borough Council proclaimed June 17 through June 23 as ‘Amateur Radio Week’ and asked all residents to extend their appreciation and respect to the community’s  amateur radio operators.

South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club (SPARC) will be participating in the American Radio Relay ...

South Plainfield Elks Honor Students of the Month

June 18, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - On Tuesday, June 12, the South Plainfield Elks honored the winners of the Grant School Character Education Monthly Pillars.  The students and their families were treated to a pasta dinner cooked and served by the Elks Youth Activities Committee and the students were given Junior Citizen of the Month Certificates.

The winners were as follows: 

Caring – ...

Holy Savior Academy’s Championship Cheerleaders Seek Funds for New Equipment

June 18, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The Holy Savior Academy Cheerleading Squad has kicked off a fundraiser to generate $5,500 for the purchase of much-needed equipment, such as new tumble mats, sound equipment, and more for the award-winning squad.

“The group of twelve girls range from 1st through 4th grades,” said parent Marybeth Parache, who is heading up efforts to raise funds.  ...

Wrestling Ring Presentation

June 20, 2018

The South Plainfield High School Wrestling Team,  who have earned the title of “Three Peat Champs”,  received their State rings on Sunday, June 10, 2018.  Presentation of the rings an plaques were given by SPHS Wrestling Coach Pavlack an assistant coaches.   Funding  for the rings were donated by the South Plainfield Wrestling Club,  who has been one of ...

Inclusive Playground Ribbon Cutting Tonight - June 20

Nixle Alert - Official ribbon cutting at 6:30 om tonight to open inclusive playground at Willow Park.  All are invited to attend, A special storytime will follow.

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_9a7d6e599775b1145bde_sparc_radio_logo_final_083115

Sat, June 23, 2:00 PM

South Plainfield

SPARC Reaching Out

Carousel_image_f442011d67fefc1cb5a2_spb-4937_newsletter_june_23

Sat, June 23, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. Southern Maryland Blue ...

Carousel_image_0261cd4c5700fd63e54b_spb-4937_newsletter_june_24

Sun, June 24, 1:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. Southern Maryland Blue ...

Carousel_image_ba23f8d0d41677854e89_spb-4937_newsletter_june_26

Tue, June 26, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. New Britain Bees Baseball ...

Carousel_image_5b249c4a7e6808d9d7bb_spb-4937_newsletter_june_27

Wed, June 27, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. New Britain Bees Baseball ...

Columns

Weinberg, Diegnan Bill to Establish University-Based Consortium on Media Innovation Advances

TRENTON –A bill sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg and Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Patrick Diegnan that would establish a state university-based consortium to advance research in the field of media and technology was passed from the Senate Higher Education Committee today.

“The state’s traditional newspaper market has been upended by changes in ...

South Plainfield and SP BOE Working Together to Strengthen School Security

South Plainfield, NJ - On Monday evening the Borough Council hired two new police officers. These hiring’s will allow two additional police officers to be stationed at South Plainfield Public Schools and will supplement the already strong security measures enacted by the Board of Education and the South Plainfield Police.

The hired officers are part of an interlocal agreement ...

The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn

The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn (William Morrow, 2018)

 

A friend, whose opinion on literature I respect greatly, reported to me recently that she had just finished reading A.J. Finn's debut novel, The Woman in the Window. Of it she said, “I wish I hadn't finished it,” which I interpreted to mean, “It was so good I'm sorry that I finished it.” ...

Bookmarks

The South Plainfield Public Library will be open this Sunday, June 24 from 1:30 PM – 5 PM.  This is the last Sunday the library will be open until September.  During July and August, the library will be closed on Sundays, but the rest of the hours during the week will remain the same.

Come join us Monday, June 25 at 6:30 PM for Monday Night Movies.  The selection this week ...

Suburban Woman’s Club Ends Its Year with a Big Banquet

Our country has a long and rich history of service clubs contributing to the growth of their communities but there have been signs in the past two decades that interest in these groups is waning.  Not so at Suburban Woman’s Club of South Plainfield.  Thanks to the efforts of Membership Chair Grace Bertucci, this past year seven new members joined this relatively small group of ...

Press Releases

SPARC RECEIVES PROCLAMATION & GETS READY FOR ARRL ANNUAL FIELD DAY

June 22, 2018

SPARC RECEIVES PROCLAMATION & GETS READY FOR ARRL ANNUAL FIELD DAY

The Borough of South Plainfield has issued the South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club(SPARC) a Proclamation at Borough Hall, on June 18,2018 at 7 PM.

The Proclamation is honoring the annual ARRL Amateur Radio Week, June 18th through June 24th and the amateur radio operators nationwide for their public service to the ...

Cool Ways to Save Money This Summer

As the summer temperatures rise, home cooling costs rise as well. But there are ways to help save money without sweating the heat:

To increase your cooling system’s efficiency by as much as 20%, get it checked out for summer.  A technician will clean the condenser, make sure you have the optimal amount of refrigerant, and ensure the airflow over the coil is ...