Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Three-alarm fire causes extensive damage at Wildwood motel


WILDWOOD - On Tuesday, June 14, 2022 at approximately 11:28 am, Wildwood City FD Squad Co. 3 and North Wildwood FD Ladder Co. 2 were dispatched to the Windward Motel, located at 5200 Ocean Avenue for the report of a structure fire.

Chief of Department Ernie Troiano III arrived on the scene and reported smoke showing from the second floor of the two-story motel. The alarm was immediately upgraded to a first alarm assignment, which recalls off-duty city firefighters and brings additional resources from Wildwood Crest FD, Rio Grande FD and Stone Harbor FD.

Companies began an aggressive attack on the fire. Firefighters fought heavy fire in the cockloft space, an open void space between the ceiling and roof, which extended the length of the building. A second alarm was transmitted, bringing additional companies from the Villas Fire Co., Erma Fire Co., Cape May City FD and Ocean View Fire Co. to the scene.

Firefighters cut a "trench cut" in the roof of the motel, which is utilized to keep the fire from spreading to uninvolved areas of the building. Firefighters were able to contain the fire to the one wing of the building and prevented it from spreading to any of the surrounding buildings.

A third alarm was transmitted for additional manpower. It took firefighters about 1.5 hours to bring the fire under control. There were no injuries during the fire and damage is estimated at $500,000. The fire was investigated by the Cape May County Fire Marshal's Office and determined to be accidental, caused by welding work that was taking place on the second floor of the motel.

Green Creek FD and Cape May Court House FD provided coverage for the city during the incident. The City of Wildwood Police Department and Wildwood Crest EMS also assisted at the fire scene. Fire units operated on the scene for about 3.5 hours before cleaning.

Report released by Deputy Fire Chief Daniel Dunn @ 18:00 hours, June 14, 2002

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