Morristown apartment fire doused quickly–along with some divorces

A two-alarm lunchtime fire at the Chancery Square apartments was extinguished quickly without serious injuries–except, perhaps, to some hot divorce cases that now may get some extra time to cool off.

It could take a while to recover legal documents from the law office below the second-story fire, said attorney Joe Cadicina.

“There was a lot of water damage to the files… They’re all in the office. We didn’t have a lot of time” to get out, he said.

Attorney Joe Cadicina in front of his Morristown law office, which will take some time to dry out after a fire was hosed down one floor above him. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

Attorney Joe Cadicina in front of his Morristown law office, which will take some time to dry out after a fire was hosed down one floor above him. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

The fire was reported at 11:40 am.

“People were coming in off the street, telling us to get out,” said legal assistant Christina LoBianco. Asked if it was frightening, she replied: “A little bit.”

The fire appears to have involved a heater in a vacant apartment on the second floor, said Morristown Fire Chief Robert Flanagan.  The building’s sprinkler system was going when firefighters arrived; they brought in pack hoses to add additional water, he said, extinguishing the fire within minutes.

One firefighter was treated on the scene for minor hand lacerations, the Chief said.  Two police officers evacuated the smoky six-floor building; one of them was coughing and was taken to Morristown Medical Center for evaluation, said Police Lt. Stuart Greer.

Cattano Avenue will be closed to traffic for much of the afternoon, police said.    reopened to traffic as of 1:25 p.m., police reported.

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Chief Flanagan said residents can return to their apartments.  The worst damage is to the law offices on the ground floor, from water, he said.

Morristown’s fire department had assistance from 14 volunteer members, in addition to Madison’s Rapid Intervention Team. The Morristown Ambulance Squad was backed up by the Morris Township Minutemen and the New Vernon first aid squad.  The Morris County Sheriff’s Office and the Morris County Park Police also assisted at the scene.

 



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