Scant information about the blaze had been released by authorities by mid-morning as officials sought to contact relatives of the dead, said to be four adults.
A neighbor said the fire, at 135 Statesir Place, happened at about 3a.
Shortly before 9a, a gas company crew dug up what appeared to be a gas meter and stowed it inside a company vehicle as television and still cameras zoomed in on the device.
The blaze appeared to have destroyed every room on the first and second floors of the split-level home, located two blocks east of Route 35, between Pine and Chestnut Streets.
“I’m in shock I can’t even believe it” said 17-year-old neighbor Michelle Ozut, who did not know about the fire until she awoke about fire hours afterwards.
She described the home’s residents as a couple in their late 20s. “They just kind of kept to themselves,” she said.