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Fire Leaves Madison Home Uninhabitable

Flames were shooting from roof of house on Midwood Terrace.

Credit: Craig Vagell Jr.
Credit: Craig Vagell Jr.

A fire burned the third floor of a borough home Thursday afternoon, leaving the house uninhabitable.

Flames were shooting from the roof in the back of the property when firefighters responded at 1:45 p.m., Madison Fire Chief Lou DeRosa said.

No injuries were reported. DeRosa said the family displaced by the fire planned to stay with local relatives.

The home on Midwood Terrace, originally built in 1914, is set back from the street on approximately two acres.

DeRosa said the fire was in the crawl space of a partially finished attic. Work was being done on the property, but the fire is not believed to be related to the construction. Officials plan to return Friday to investigate the fire's cause, he said.

The homeowner was alerted to the fire by a contractor, and tried to put it out with a fire extinguisher before calling 911, the fire chief said.

The house's older construction made it more challenging to open walls to access the fire, which DeRosa said was "stubborn" and far along when firefighters arrived.

Florham Park, Chatham, Chatham Township, Morris Township, Morristown, Cedar Knolls, Whippany and Green Village fire departments responded to the fire. The Morris Plains Fire Department brought a county air truck to refill firefighters' air tanks, and the Morris County Office of Emergency Management responded with its mobile ambulance bus.

Cold weather led to icing. Firefighters used calcium at the house to melt the ice, and Madison DPW workers salted the area. The Madison police, electric and water departments and the Madison Volunteer Ambulance Corps also responded.

"It was a great job by all," DeRosa said. "Everybody worked well together."

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