🔥 The fire started under the boardwalk near Central Pier

🔥 Officials say a sleeping man near a campfire was found dead

🔥 The fire damaged an arcade, according to officials

ATLANTIC CITY — Officials said one man was killed and several businesses were damaged by a fire that started under the boardwalk Thursday night.

Over 50 firefighters battled the fire that started after 7 p.m., according to Atlantic City Fire Chief Scott Evans. The fire sent thick black smoke into the air over the boardwalk.

Atlantic County Prosecutor William Reynolds said an investigation determined the fire began in a small homeless encampment near Tennessee Avenue by a combustible exposed to an open flame.

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Fire under the Atlantic City boardwalk 4/18/24
Fire under the Atlantic City boardwalk 4/18/24 (Harry Hurley, Townsquare Media)

Damage to boardwalk

The fire claimed the life of Bruce Eder, 67. A small campfire was found in front of Elder who was sleeping at the time.

The fire spread upwards damaging the structure of the boardwalk and an arcade above in the Central Pier, according to Reynolds.

Evans said the arcade along with a Speedway, a pizza shop and convenience store were all closed at the time.

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