Spark from a Welder’s Torch: Hotel in Wildwood, NJ, Heavily Damaged by Fire
Officials in Wildwood say a hotel in the city was heavily damaged by fire Tuesday and the fire chief confirmed to Townsquare Media that the blaze was started by a spark from a welder’s torch.
WPVI-TV reports firefighters were called to the Windward Hotel at the corner of Ocean and Bennett Avenues, just three blocks south of the famous, large "Wildwood" sign, at around 11 AM.
Authorities say the fire went from one end of the building to the other; it took heavy water and smoke damage.
No guests were in the hotel at the time of the fire and no injuries were reported.
Firefighters were seen working to keep the fire from spreading to the neighboring Sea Kist Motel, which was not damaged, nor were any other properties.
The Wildwood Police Department reported that all roads surrounding the hotel had reopened by 3:30 Tuesday afternoon.
The fire obviously comes at a bad time for a local business owner at the shore. Not only is the summer tourism season just beginning but tens of thousands of people will be flocking to the Wildwoods for the four-day Barefoot Country Music Fest on the beach, which starts Thursday evening.
A real estate listing for the property says the hotel has been for sale for the past few months. The 23-unit inn was listed for $2.7 million.
With reporting from Townsquare Media's Dan Alexander.