EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP — Multiple township fire companies responded to a Monday afternoon fire on Ocean Heights Avenue that destroyed a family’s home.
At around 4:30 p.m., police closed off the 1100 block of Ocean Heights Avenue between Winnipeg and Alder avenues as fire crews worked to extinguish the blaze.
The large windows in the front of the home were broken and heavily blackened from smoke. The siding melted off the house around the room where the homeowner said the fire began.
Mike Servis, who owns the home and lives with his wife and two daughters, said he believes the fire began after a cable technician was at his home Monday afternoon.
Servis said shortly after the technician left, the house smelled of smoke. His daughters left the house to go to the mall “10 minutes” before the smoke got worse and flames started.
“The house filled with smoke, then went up in flames,” Servis said, “I grabbed my wallet and my phone. I knew it was too late for anything else.”
Authorities were alerted to guns and ammunition in the house. Servis attempted to dampen the ammunition to prevent further damage to his house.
Servis said he attempted to shut off the house’s electricity through the outside box. He told township fire investigators and officials that the electronics in the home began sparking from what he believed were power surges.
“I could hear them, ‘pop, pop, pop’... you could feel the volts going through the home,” said Servis.
Fire departments from Scullville, Farmington, Bargaintown, Egg Harbor Township, Mays Landing, Laureldale and Somers Point responded to the fire. Fire officials have not determined the cause of the fire.
Servis and his wife were unsure as of Monday night if they would need assistance from the Red Cross.