At 3 a.m., the residents at 135 Deepdale Drive were awoken by their smoke detectors and discovered a fire in their attached two-car garage, according to a Middletown Township Fire Department press release. The residents evacuated the house and sought shelter with neighbors.
Approximately 55 firefighters from the Middletown, River Plaza, Old Village Fire, Belford Engine, and Port Monmouth Fire Companies under the command of Department Chief Peter Laimann responded to the scene.
Firefighters faced severe snow and ice conditions from the storm the night before. The firefighters deployed a hand line to suppress the garage blaze, which was fueled, in part, by two burning vehicles. An additional hose line was used to knock down a small amount of fire which had extended into the attic of the adjacent residential portion of the house.
The fire burned through the roof of the garage section which subsequently collapsed. Several firefighters were treated at the scene for minor fall related injuries. The residential portion of the structure sustained smoke and water damage and is uninhabitable.
Laimann declared the fire under control within 45 minutes. The last units left the scene by 6:30 a.m.
The Middletown Township Department of Public Works salted and sanded the area roads during the incident. Also assisting at the scene were the MTFD Air Support Unit and the Lincroft & Fairview First Aid Squads.
The fire is being investigated by the Middletown Township Fire Prevention office.