Do you trust the games at the Jersey Shore? Inspections are underway
SEASIDE HEIGHTS — You want to have fun at the Jersey Shore. Officials want to make sure you're not getting scammed.
Periodic inspections are underway, and will continue throughout the summer, of arcades and prize stands at oceanside destinations, to ensure the legitimacy of the games being offered. More than 100 violations were handed down in summer 2022.
"When you come and play games at the boardwalk, we want you to know that you've got a fair shot," said Attorney General Matthew Platkin, who highlighted inspection efforts during a visit to the boardwalk in Seaside Heights on Thursday.
It may not seem like it when you're on a losing streak, but all amusement games and arcades need to be licensed and follow specific rules from the state Division of Consumer Affairs. Basketballs need to be properly inflated, claws need to be able to actually carry the prizes that are inside their machines, and rubber frogs being tossed around at Frog Bog need to be in like-new condition, for example.
"You certainly have some people who are skirting the rules, and we catch them," Platkin said.
Inspectors also make visits to retail stores along the shore. Every item needs to have a clear price, so that there are no surprises at the cash register. And each store needs to have a refund policy in place.
Safe Summer Task Force inspections resulted in 14 violations across 12 shops in summer 2022, amounting to $6,500 in fines.
A total of 111 violations last summer resulted in $26,500 in penalties and fines for arcades and amusement games. Violations included: prizes displayed but not available to win, crane game prizes located outside of the crane's reach, and charging fees in excess of the state's $10 limit.