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Wiring Damaged By Sandy Caused N.J. Boardwalk Fire

Firefighters stand at the scene of a massive fire that destroyed dozens of businesses along an iconic Jersey shore boardwalk on September 13, 2013 in Seaside Heights, New Jersey.
Firefighters stand at the scene of a massive fire that destroyed dozens of businesses along an iconic Jersey shore boardwalk on September 13, 2013 in Seaside Heights, New Jersey.

Officials said a fire that raged along the famous boardwalk in the New Jersey Shore last week was caused by faulty electrical wiring likely damaged by last year's Hurricane Sandy.

The Newark Star-Ledger reports:

"Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph D. Coronato said fire investigators are confident that electrical wiring was to blame, saying the wiring was apparently damaged by exposure to salt water and sand during and after Hurricane Sandy.

"'The wiring that we're talking about was installed, we believe, after 1970,' Coronato said. 'This wire could have failed on its own," but he said it was compromised by Sandy's floodwaters.

"A painstaking investigation ruled out arson or a discarded cigarette, the prosecutor said."

According to the AP, Coronato said that the possibility exists that there is faulty wiring along other parts of the boardwalk.

"We don't want to start a panic mode; we just want to be reasonable," Coronato said. "If you're a property owner and you think your electrical work came in contact with water and sand, we strongly recommend you have it inspected."

The fire was dramatic and spread quickly, destroying more than 50 business in Seaside Park and Seaside Heights.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.