Fire at Seaport Inlet Marina in Belmar sparks safety concerns

A large fire at the Seaport Inlet Marina in Belmar Tuesday is reigniting some ongoing community concerns about the property.

The fire destroyed about a dozen boats and sent thick, black plumes of smoke into the sky that was seen for miles. Dozens of residents were evacuated during the fire as a precaution.

"Most of the houses completely wreak of smoke and fuel," says neighbor Jon Evans.

News 12 New Jersey saw more than a dozen drums around the marina which sources say contain gasoline. At least one of the drums was labeled "bad gas."

"I have had concerns in the past about some of the things that I've seen and I do worry about the safety," says neighbor Molly Spanarkel.

Other residents say that they worry about the quantity of boats that dry docked on the property. Some of the boats sit about 30 feet in the air.

"I would feel better if I knew that everything was up to code there. That there were inspections," Spanarkel says.

News 12 has also confirmed that the marina did not have the proper permits to build the boat garage that was damaged in the fire. An attorney says the garage was only a temporary structure.

News 12 has been told that multiple code violations will be issued to the marina.

Multiple agencies are involved in the fire investigation, including the DEP. The cause of the fire is still not known.

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