CARLSTADT, NJ -- A large brush fire burning here this week came within a few hundred feet of the headquarters of Betson Enterprises, the nation's largest amusement, jukebox and vending machine distributor. The fire, now contained, broke out on Wednesday afternoon.
Betson is located at 303 Paterson Plank Rd., close to where emergency crews where battling the blaze. According Betson executive vice-president Bob Boals, the distributorship did not experience any disruptions in service this week due to the fire, which generated large plumes of black smoke visible from the New Jersey Turnpike in Middlesex County, highways in Essex County and parts of Manhattan.
Fire companies from several towns responded. "The fire departments did an excellent job in containing the fire," said Boals, who added that the fire is now expected to burn out on its own.
Betson's first quarter was among the busiest in recent years, Boals noted. "Jukebox, amusement and even vending machine sales are improving over the last year, which was also strong," he said. The New Jersey office is particularly busy this month fulfilling orders for the arcades along the state's shoreline.