Firefighters and other emergency workers headed to J. McLaughlin at 17 Witherspoon Street around 11 a.m. today in response to reports that an electrical odor could be smelled at the building. The odor coming from the building could be smelled across the street on Witherspoon Street.
Police could not see a fire source. The fire is likely in the walls, firefighters said. Firefighters from several fire companies are at the scene searching for the source of the fire. Mercer County fire coordinators were called to the second-alarm fire.
The fire was caused by the blower motor of a roof-top heating unit. The fire was extinguished quickly and did not spread to the rest of the building.
Several fire companies and the Princeton First Aid and Rescue Squad reported to the scene. Conditions made travel more difficult for mutual aid agencies. The snow and wind also made it more difficult for emergency works to maneuver around the building.
Four residents or more who live in two apartments above the clothing store were displaced from their homes temporarily . They waited across the street at Small World Coffee to find out what was happening and when they’d be able to go back to their apartments. They were let back in in the afternoon.
Witherspoon Street was closed between Nassau Street and Paul Robeson Place.