Firefighting crews have extinguished a flare-up related to the massive fire that swept through the boardwalk on New Jersey's shore.
The Ocean County Prosecutor's Office says the flare-up occurred at about 2:20 a.m. Sunday in a debris pile on the south end of the boardwalk behind the Sawmill Bar in Seaside Park. Fire companies from Seaside Park and Seaside Heights extinguished the fire by 3 a.m. and wet down the area.
Fire and emergency management officials are monitoring the fire zone until 6 p.m. Monday and will meet then to decide if further monitoring is necessary.
The wind-whipped blaze destroyed dozens of ocean-front businesses Thursday in an area that was still recovering from Superstorm Sandy.
Officials are still investigating the cause of the fire.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie pledged $15 million in state aid Saturday for businesses damaged by the fire.
Christie met privately with 30 of the more than 50 business owners who suffered losses, promising an aggressive response to haul away rubble from the fire and help them rebuild again.
"We had two days to feel sad about this, and it is legitimately a sad thing. But we've got work to do now. A couple days to mourn, now we've got to move on and get back to work,'' Christie said.
Christie's office said the New Jersey Economic Development Authority board plans to extend an initial $15 million from programs offered to help in the recovery from Sandy. Those funds would be made available whether or not the fire-damaged businesses were affected by Sandy, according to the Christie administration.
"It was critical that we move quickly to aid the Seaside business community, which was still struggling to recover from Superstorm Sandy,'' said Michele Brown, CEO of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, which is expected to formally take action at a meeting Wednesday.
During his visit Saturday, Christie also greeted residents, many of whom thanked the governor for coming to the shore town that was still recovering from Sandy when disaster struck again.
"I wouldn't be anyplace else,'' Christie said, having canceled a weekend getaway to Florida to celebrate his wife's birthday. "When a crisis happens you have to be here to help organize things, to lend encouragement and deliver help.''
The good news, if there is any, Christie said, is that the fire was contained before it engulfed the entire boardwalk.
"This could have been significantly worse. We have about four blocks that were taken out, and for those people on those four blocks, it's awful. But, we could have lost all of this,'' he said, gesturing to a portion of the boardwalk untouched by the flames.
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