On Wednesday, September 05, 2018 at 8:54 a.m., the Lacey Township Police Department received multiple phone and 911 calls reporting a large volume of smoke coming from the roof of Caffrey’s Tavern, located at 440 Route 9 South in Forked River. Upon arrival, officers observed heavy smoke emanating from the kitchen area of the restaurant along with large volumes of flames coming from the roof. Officers confirmed everyone was evacuated from the restaurant.
The Forked River, Lanoka Harbor and Bamber Lake Fire Companies responded to the initial alarm. A short time later the Forked River Fire Department requested a second alarm activating several Fire Companies throughout Ocean County. As the fire progressed Route 9 was closed in both directions between Lakeside Drive South and Parker’s Point Boulevard. Lacey Township EMS and Lanoka Harbor First Aid responded, along with a firefighter rehabilitation unit from Stafford Township.
The Ocean County Fire Marshal’s Office, the NJ State Fire Marshal’s Office, the Lacey Township Police Detective Bureau, the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department and the Ocean County Prosecutors Office responded and assisted in the investigation. Traffic control was maintained with the assistance of the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department and the NJ Department of Transportation.
Route 9 was reopened in both directions at 1:45 p.m. The investigation is ongoing.
I would like to give a special thanks to the Wawa, located across the street from Caffrey’s Tavern, for all of their support during the fire.
-Chief Michael C. DiBella