- Associated Press - Sunday, May 4, 2014

SPARTA, N.J. (AP) - One man was killed and a firefighter was burned when a fast-moving fire destroyed one home and severely damaged another in northwestern New Jersey.

Sparta police say the blaze was reported around 5:30 a.m. Saturday, and it took firefighters several hours to bring it under control.

The male victim was found on the first floor of the two-story home. Authorities said he was alone in the home when the fire broke out and his name has not been released, pending notification of family members.

Sparta Fire Lt. Anthony Riehl suffered burns on his shoulder and back while searching the home for other possible victims. The 37-year-old Riehl was treated at St. Barnabas Hospital’s Burn Unit in Livingston, where he was treated for second-degree burns and released later Saturday.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation by state police and the Sussex County Prosecutor’s Office.

Authorities say the victim’s home was completely destroyed, while a neighboring residence sustained significant damage to the fire’s intense heat. It was not immediately clear if anyone was in the second home when the fire occurred.

The victim’s home was engulfed in flames when police first arrived on scene, and the intense heat and smoke prevented them from entering the residence.

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