By Elizabeth Hur
MAYS LANDING, N.J. (CBS) – Fire destroyed two homes and damaged two others in a community for seniors.
Firefighters say they had their hands full with the flames on Pebble Beach Drive in the Fairways Development.
Multiple fire departments responded to the scene in Mays Landing, Atlantic County Tuesday afternoon.
Vicky Hall rushed home from work when she got the call. But it was too late, she lost her home, her pets and her belongings but she was still grateful. Turns out, she was able to salvage some valuables.
Hall explained, “My wedding rings, I’m getting married in September, we got my wedding rings.”
Carol Germain was shocked. She says she first heard the commotion. She then came out to investigate and could not believe her eyes.
“Frightened for everybody around here and the wind was strong like this and it could jump from house to house,” Germain recalled.
“Nobody was home but with the light weight construction and the wind driving the fire, this is what happens,” Chief Shawn Vallauri with the Cologne Fire Department said.
It happened around 2:30 Tuesday afternoon and authorities say battling the blaze was no easy task.
Chief Vallauri explained, “There was a problem with the hydrant system so between the problem with the hydrant system and the wind, we just needed the extra water, we needed the extra manpower.”
In the end, it took more than 70 firefighters from multiple agencies to bring the fire under control.
Family members affected from the fire were being assisted by Red Cross, Salvation Army and Atlantic County Emergency Management.
An investigation into what caused the fire is underway.
Anyone who may have witnessed anything or have any information pertinent to the investigation are asked to contact the Hamilton Police Department at 609-625-2700 ext. 578.