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Posted Wednesday, October 24th, 2018

Morris County Prosecutor’s Office and Town of Dover Announcement on Dover Fire

Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp and Dover Mayor James P. Dodd announce the following:

Morris Prosecutor: Dover Fire Investigation is OngoingAn investigation into the origin and cause of the Monday’s major fire in Dover is being conducted jointly by the Dover Police Department and the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Fire/Environmental Unit, along with the Morris County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, Bergen County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit, N.J. Division of Fire Safety Fire Marshal’s Office, and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

On Monday, Oct.22, at 3:29 p.m., a caller reported smoke in the basement of Barry’s Luncheonette, a business located in a commercial/residential building at 3 North Warren Street in Dover.

First responding firefighters and police officers observed heavy smoke in the area and safely evacuated all occupants of adjacent structures.  Thick smoke and the sound of fire was heard/observed throughout several adjoining buildings that house businesses and residences.

The fire quickly spread upward and outward, eventually venting through the roof of the adjoined buildings at 17 and 19 West Blackwell Street.  The fire continued to spread northward to the adjacent buildings at 3, 5, 7 and 9 North Warren Street.Morris Prosecutor: Dover Fire Investigation is Ongoing

Fire suppression efforts were undertaken externally by ground crews and aerial ladder apparatus from all sides of the structures.  Several of the buildings collapsed during fire suppression operations.  A police officer suffered a minor injury at the scene; otherwise there were no injuries reported.

By 9 p.m., the fire was brought under control.  Fire crews remained on scene overnight and throughout the day Tuesday due to smoldering debris and to assist in excavation/cleanup operations.

In total, 6 businesses and 10 apartments were completely destroyed, and 3 businesses and 6 apartments suffered smoke/water/heat damage, as follows:

Completely Destroyed

  • El Paraisa Restaurant / two overhead apartments – 19 West Blackwell Street
  • La Notaria (notary public) – 17.5 West Blackwell Street
  • La Bamba Grill Mexican Restaurant – 17 West Blackwell Street
  • Four overhead apartments – 9 North Warren Street
  • Taqueria Brenda Lee Restaurant – 7 North Warren Street
  • Jocelyn Beauty Salon – 5 North Warren Street
  • Barry’s Luncheonette / four overhead apartments – 3 North Warren Street

Partially Damaged

  • Morris Thrift Store – 11 North Warren Street
  • Piñatas Las Flores (party supply store) – 21 West Blackwell Street
  • Dover Discount Store & six overhead apartments – 23 West Blackwell Street

Approximately 80 residents have been either temporarily or permanently displaced.  The American Red Cross is providing care for the affected families and residents (all donations are being managed through the Red Cross).

Due to the significance of this fire, the Morris County Fire Mutual Aid Plan was put into effect, wherein the Morris County Office of Emergency Management, through its County Fire Coordinator, oversees the deployment and management of the numerous mutual aid resources in support of large firefighting operations. The Dover Department of Public Works and Water Department, with the aid of neighboring towns, ensured sufficient water resources were available for suppression operations.

The following agencies responded and assisted with operations at the scene:

  1. Dover FD
  2. Picatinny Arsenal FD
  3. Rockaway Boro FD
  4. Wharton FD
  5. Randolph FD
  6. Mine Hill FD
  7. Parsippany Dist. 1 FD
  8. Netcong FD
  9. Parsippany Dist. 5 FD
  10. Chester Boro FD
  11. Parsippany R&R FD
  12. Parsippany Dist. 4 FD
  13. Cedar Knolls FD
  14. Washington Twp. FD
  15. Whippany FD
  16. Parsippany Dist. 2 FD
  17. Parsippany Dist. 6 FD
  18. Morris Twp. FD
  19. Morris Plains FD
  20. Mt. Tabor FD
  21. Flanders FD
  22. Jefferson Twp. FD
  23. Brookside FD
  24. Denville FD
  25. Rockaway Twp. FD
  26. Schooley’s Mountain FD
  27. Warren Co. Fire Task Force
  28. Franklin Twp. FD
  29. Blairstown FD
  30. Allamuchy FD
  31. Byram FD
  32. Andover FD
  33. East Hanover FD
  34. Madison FD
  35. Wayne FD
  36. Rainbow Lakes FD
  37. Boonton FD
  38. Paterson FD
  39. Wharton PD
  40. Morris County Dept. of Law & Public Safety
  41. Morris County Office of Emergency Management
  42. Morris County Prosecutor’s Office
  43. Morris County Park Police
  44. Morris County Sheriff’s Office
  45. Bergen County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit
  46. NJ State Police
  47. NJ Transit PD
  48. NJ Dept. of Transportation
  49. NJ Division of Fire Safety
  50. Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives
  51. St. Clare’s Hospital EMS
  52. Atlantic Health EMS

Inquiries should be directed to Public Information Officer Peter DiGennaro at [email protected] or 973-829-8159.