WAWA FOOD MARKET fire  -  October 10, 2002

At 7:37 pm on Thursday, Oct. 10, 2002, Wildwood Crest Fire Co. responded to a building fire at the Wawa convenience store at 6711 New Jersey Ave.

Upon arrival, E438's crew encountered heavy smoke and high temperatures in the entire sales area of the store.

Crews from E438 and E437 made an aggressive attack using two 1-3/4" handlines as a vent crew vented the front windows.

The fire was confined to the 12' long potato chip rack in the rear of the display area, but the heat generated by the burning snacks caused extensive heat damage to the entire top half of the store interior.

The only other flame damage resulted when the paper goods on the top shelf of the front aisle ignited after the crews had crawled past it en route to the rear of the store.

A combination of the two handlines and well-timed ventilation resulted in a quick knockdown.

Interior crews used their water streams to dislodge ceiling panels and quickly determined that there was no extension above the dropped ceiling.

A crew from Tower 460 was in position to open the roof, but additional ventilation was not required.

The Wildwood Fire Dept. assisted with a RIT (E336) and also placed an engine (E337) in the Wildwood Crest station.  Wildwood Crest Rescue provided rehab and stood by with an ambulance (R4).

Although there was no structural damage to the building, the store is expected to be closed for at least ten weeks. The cause of the fire is under investigation.