Pre-Dawn Fire Chases Guests From Spray Beach Inn; No One Hurt

Jan 23, 2019
Photo by: Bill McConnell

At 3:29 in the morning Monday, Jan. 21, the Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Co. was dispatched to a structure fire at Spray Beach Hotel, 24th Street and oceanfront in the Spray Beach section of Long Beach Township. The fire was contained, and no one was injured.

A family staying in the hotel at the time the fire began said they had evacuated themselves that morning as their room was overcome with thick smoke.

“My family and I were in the hotel at the time of the fire. We had to evacuate ourselves at 3:30 this morning. We had to drive back to Chester County, Pa., at that time. Rooms were overcome with thick smoke,” said Bill McConnell.

“As far as I know there was only my family and one other room occupied,” he said. “After I secured my family I went around to knock on doors. We barely heard the alarm in a sound sleep. The smoke woke my daughter up. Very scary.”

According to the fire company, the Long Beach Township police were on site when firemen arrived, and the officers “had discharged a few extinguishers trying to suppress the fire and putting a good stop to it,” as a post on the fire company Facebook page explained. “The crew of Engine 1511 was first on scene and able to knock down the rest. Mutual aid from Station 46 arrived and helped us make sure there was no extension of fire.

“It was extremely cold and we are very thankful for the help from everyone on scene,” including the Ship Bottom Volunteer Fire Co., Beach Haven First Aid Squad, Atlantic City Electric, New Jersey Natural Gas and Ocean County Fire Marshal’s Office, in addition to the LBTPD, the fire company company wrote. “Thank goodness there were no injuries.”

The company also expressed gratitude to Long Beach Township for bringing a salt truck to help mitigate all ice hazards.

Long Beach Township police said the fire marshal’s office – which is responsible for local fire code enforcement in 12 Ocean County municipalities, including Long Beach Township – was the lead on the case. A call to that office was not returned by press time.  —J.K.-H.

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