red bank fire 060920A plumbing test gone awry led to the evacuation of a three-story building in downtown Red Bank Tuesday morning, officials said.

red bank fire 060920Volunteer firefighters responded to the 10:12 a.m. alarm at 32 Monmouth Street.

According to Fire Marshal Tommy Welsh, contractors improperly used a smoke machine used to test the plumbing system for leaks. The smoke charge itself caught fire, sending smoke into the second and third floors and setting off a smoke alarm.

The building, a onetime location of borough hall that now houses the Antoinette Boulangerie pastry shop on its first floor, changed hands in February, when RGH RB LLC bought it for $1.4 million, according to Monmouth County records. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

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