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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Video of Fire Destroying New Jersey Boardwalk Rebuilt After Sandy

A six-alarm fire that started in a frozen custard shop in Seaside Park, N.J., Thursday afternoon quickly spread up sections of the boardwalk built after Hurricane Sandy, engulfing multiple businesses, a condominium complex and amusements.

Fueled by strong winds, the fire stretched six blocks, bringing down the Funtown Pier, the home of Seaside’s famed roller coaster before it ended up in the ocean last October. Here is live video from the scene.

Video and images were posted soon after the fire began at 2:30 p.m. on the Jersey Shore Hurricane News Facebook page. The page was started after Hurricane Sandy to give local residents a place to exchange information and keep up with news about cleanup efforts.

Gov. Chris Christie arrived on the scene around 6 p.m. to meet with firefighters and survey the damage.

At a 7 p.m. briefing, Governor Christie said that firefighters and trucks from around the state were assisting emergency personnel in Seaside Park and Seaside Heights, and that the fire had damaged about 20 businesses. “There have been several minor injuries to firefighters,” he said.

Mr. Christie said he felt sick to his stomach when he learned the boardwalk was on fire after “all the time and effort we put in to help Seaside Heights and Seaside Park rebuild.”

Crews were digging up portions of the boardwalk so the fire would not spread farther into Seaside Heights, he said, and firefighters were drawing water from Barnegat Bay to hose down the flames. “There have been some challenges to water supply because of damage to the system from Sandy,” he said. “To get around this, we are drawing water from Barnegat Bay. Lines are being run from the bay all the way here to the boardwalk.”

Mr. Christie asked that people not come to the scene. “As soon as this is over,” he said, “we will pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and get back to work.”