Fire burns through six-family home in New Jersey

November 3, 2011 2:17:01 PM PDT
A huge fire had families running for their lives in New Jersey early Thursday morning.

The flames broke out at about 5:30 a.m. at an apartment building on 21st Street near Hopkins Place in Irvington.

"I woke up, heard a pop, saw the store on fire," Irvington resident Robert Thompson said. " So I'm running around, looking for my pants...And I decided I think I better get out of there."

It was a good decision to forget looking for stuff and just get out, as the flames overtook the building.

"When I pulled up, from ground to roof was nothing but fire," deputy fire chief Randy Coddington said.

Where it started is under investigation, but the flames burned through the six-family apartment building. It then spread to the three-family home next door.

About 50 firefighters from Irvington and Newark got the three-alarm fire under control. The fire destroyed the goods inside the B and F Mini Market on the corner.

Margie DeJesus has owned the store for 12 years. She was shaken, surveying the damage.

"My mother says God always does things for a reason," she said. "Maybe it's my time to leave."

The cause of the blaze is also under investigation.