A pair of lagoon-front homes on Bay Way in Brick Township – located near the convergence of Kettle Creek and Barnegat Bay – suffered heavy damage in a fire that broke out mid-afternoon Monday. It took hours to fight the blaze, which was being driven by strong winds, and one firefighter suffered a minor injury.
Kevin C. Batzel, chief of the Brick Township Bureau of Fire Safety, said firefighters were called to the home at 31 Bay Way at about 3:30 p.m.
“It was heavy involved and upgraded immediately to a confirmed structure fire,” Batzel said, explaining that the upgraded status expands the call to include all four of the township’s fire companies. Fire companies from Silverton, Point Pleasant Beach and Point Pleasant Borough also responded, with the Jackson and Lakewood fire companies covering Brick’s other calls in the interim.
One resident of the home at 31 Bay Way escaped unharmed. When firefighters arrived, Batzel said, the strong winds were already pushing the flames toward the home next door, 29 Bay Way. The responders “went defensive immediately,” Batzel added, in order to keep the blaze from affecting even more homes.
One firefighter sustained a minor burn and was treated at the scene. There were no other reported injuries. The second home affected by the fire was identified as a seasonal residence that was not occupied Monday afternoon.
“They remained on the scene for quite some time – about three hours,” said Batzel, and investigators will return in the morning. “The fire inside 31 [Bay Way] had caused the roof to collapse, so the investigation will be picked up at first light.”
The Brick Township Building Department was notified, and the fire will be investigated by the Brick Township Bureau of Fire Safety and the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office.