House Fire Displaces Rutgers’ Students

By: Brian Connorsfire 1fire 2

A three alarm blaze in a multi-family home at 175 Hamilton St. late Sunday evening displaced 20 Rutgers students just as the spring semester is getting into full swing.

The 7 residents of 175 Hamilton St. as well as the 13 students who live in the neighboring house of 173 Hamilton St. are currently without their off-campus homes. The residents of the neighboring house will not be allowed to move back in until the destroyed chimney of the burnt down home is removed.

Katherine Rossi, 20, resident of 173 Hamilton St. and a sophomore at Rutgers University, was in her neighboring home when the fire started next door. She is currently displaced because of the fire.

“The night of the fire we smelt something burning and looked out of our living room window to see black smoke coming from the basement of the house next door,” she said. “We all evacuated our house and the fire department had just arrived.”

According to New Brunswick Spokesperson Jennifer Bradshaw, 50 firefighters were on the scene. “On-scene aid was provided by East Franklin, Edison, East Brunswick, and North Brunswick. Additional assistance was provided by Sayreville, Milltown, Highland Park and North Brunswick Company two,” she said. The firefighters quickly started working to get the fire under control and making sure to keep everyone safe from the blaze.

“They made everyone cross the street and we saw the boys that live down in the basement, one had burnt his hand so he left in an ambulance,” said Rossi. The student was treated at Robert Wood Johnson for minor burns.

“The fire reached the top floor of the house within 15 minutes. It was terrible to watch everything get destroyed. If it was as windy as the night before, our house would have been up in flames,” said Rossi.

As reported by The Daily Targum, the fire started when a container of rubbing alcohol spilled near an open oven in the basement apartment.

Two different online fundraising campaigns have been started to help benefit the displaced students who have lost their belongings in the fire. The first fundraiser is for 3 Kappa Phi Gamma sisters through GoFundMe. The campaign page states, “Not only did they lose all of their personal belongings such as clothes, but they lost all of the books and school supplies they need for the semester.” They have raised $6,641 of their $10,000 goal as of Saturday afternoon.

The second fundraising campaign is being run through Indiegogo for students Kevin Baron and Max Yenk. The donation page so far has compiled $1,990 out of their $10,000 goal.