12 trailers destroyed, 14 damaged in four-alarm blaze at Upper Township campground

"This is the largest fire the township has responded to in 30 years," said Deputy Chief Roy Blackledge.

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Thursday, April 13, 2023
Two-alarm fire destroys trailers at South Jersey campground
Chopper 6 was overhead after flames ripped through an Upper Township, NJ campground on April 11, 2023.

UPPER TWP., New Jersey (WPVI) -- A massive fire that ravaged an Upper Township, New Jersey campground was the largest in 30 years, according to officials.

The flames broke out around 3:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Seaville Shores Campground in the unit block of Corsons Tavern Road in Upper Township.

When firefighters arrived, there were multiple campers already on fire.

A series of explosions and the intense heat only fueled the flames that grew to four alarms, officials said.

"The conflagration was so intense it caused damage to many trailers over 100 feet from the fire. Embers caused woods fires in multiple locations burning over two acers of woods that was handled by the NJ State Forest Fire Service," officials said in a news release.

In all, 12 trailers were destroyed and another 14 were damaged.

Twenty-six fire companies and over 100 firefighters battled the flames until it was brought under control at 6:30 p.m.

"This is the largest fire the township has responded to in 30 years, fire fighting operations were hampered by intense heat, the fire causing its own driven winds and the need to use tankers for water supply all added to a difficult time for crews working the scene," said Deputy Chief Roy Blackledge with the Seaville Fire Rescue Company.

One firefighter was transported to Shore Medical Center for evaluation and was released a short time later. No other injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Upper Township Mayor Jay Newman released this statement to Action News on the blaze:

"The Township of Upper thanks our local volunteer fire departments and rescue squads for their hard work during yesterday's tragic trailer fires in Seaville.

Their dedication and commitment was displayed during the many hours they spent on scene.

The Township thanks all the mutual aid agencies that came and assisted during this catastrophic event.

Our deepest support and condolences go out to all those affected by this fire.

A statement about the details of the fire, from the Seaville Fire and Rescue Company, is accompanying this release.

On behalf of myself and the Township Committee we are forever thankful to all the members of the Township's Emergency Responders and those who support them."