(Photo: Screenshot/ABC Action News)
A massive fire broke out on the Seaside Park Boardwalk in New Jersey on Thursday afternoon around 2:30 p.m when firefighters responded to a call of flames coming from the popular Kohr Brothers Frozen Custard stand.
Seaside Heights Police Chief Thomas Boyd told reporters that the fire began at Kohr's ice cream shop around 2:30 p.m., and strong southeast winds caused the flames to quickly spread to 19 other buildings on the boardwalk. Surrounding areas are now being evacuated and business workers from that section of the boardwalk, as well as firefighters, are reportedly being treated for smoke inhalation.
Boyd told the New Jersey Star-Ledger that he couldn't comment further on the ongoing blaze, adding: "We've got everyone in the county coming. We're in trouble here. We've got major problems." Additionally, the Star-Ledger noted that firefighters were ordered to pull back from the blaze around 4:30 p.m. due to the high intensity of the fire.
Firefighters also reported multiple explosions following the fire. Since its beginning earlier this afternoon, the fire has been changed from a five alarm to a six alarm identification.
Aerial video footage shows a large plume of black smoke originating from the ice cream shop and rising along the shoreline. Firefighting crews told CBS Philadelphia that their teams were having trouble getting adequate water sourced to the fire, and embers from the blaze were found floating as far as four blocks away.
Authorities have also evacuated the FunTown Amusement Pier located near the legendary Khor Brothers Frozen Custard Stand. Seaside Park Boardwalk and the FunTown Pier became iconic images in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy that hit the east coast in 2012, wreaking havoc on the Jersey shore. The rollercoaster located at the end of FunTown pier became especially synonymous with the hurricane because it completely collapsed into the ocean due to high winds and rough waters. The boardwalk and pier have since been rebuilt.
Here is a related video about this fire: