HO-HO-KUS, N.J., NOV. 25, 2019 – During the early morning hours of Thursday November 21st the Ho-Ho-Kus Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to an activated fire alarm at Albert’s Cafe Amici on Sycamore Ave. Chief of Department Keith Rosazza arrived first on the scene at approximately 2:05am to find thick black smoke issuing from the roof and filling the restaurant’s dining room from floor to ceiling.
Assistant Chief Scott McDermott along with Engine 733 arrived moments later and immediately placed a hose line in service and connected to a nearby fire hydrant. The engine crew forced entry into the locked building and began searching for any signs of fire or possible victims.
Truck 741 and Engine 731 soon arrived on scene extending the aerial ladder to the roof and stretching several additional hose lines into the building. Once firefighting crews reached the rear of the restaurant they found the kitchen filled with flames and heat with temperatures high enough to melt the metal cooktop ventilation hood. It was quickly determined that help would be needed from other fire companies outside of Ho-Ho-Kus to extinguish the blaze. Chief Rosazza requested a third alarm response bringing a total of 12 additional fire companies to the scene plus 3 firehouse cover companies into the town. The Ho-Ho-Kus Volunteer Ambulance Corps was placed on standby at the scene to help rehab any fatigued or injured firefighters. The Ho-Ho-Kus Fire Department along with the neighboring mutual aid fire departments worked for the next hour to bring the blaze under control.
The tireless and aggressive work of the firefighters resulted in saving the building from total destruction without injury.
The Ho-Ho-Kus Fire Department would like to thank the Ho-Ho-Kus Police Department and Ambulance Corps for their help Thursday morning. The department would also like to thank the mutual aid fire departments that assisted: Waldwick, Wyckoff, Ridgewood, Allendale, Saddle River, Upper Saddle River, Glen Rock, Ramsey, Fair Lawn, Mahwah, Midland Park, Franklin Lakes, Oakland, Paramus and Washington Township.
Photo Credit: CHRISTOPHER SADOWSKI – DO NOT REDISTRIBUTE