WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A grassy area in a Florida airport caught fire, and thousands of cars perished during the incident.
- The fire was declared under control only after 18 hours from the time it has reportedly started.
- No airport facilities and structures were damaged during the fire, and no injuries were reported as well.
Fire officials reported that thousands of rental vehicles and cars were devastated during a fire that set ablaze the grassy site of Southwest Florida International Airport.
The fire, which started last Friday, covered around 15 acres of the grassy area, and only 20 cars are said to be primarily affected at the overflow parking portion of the airport in Fort Myers, as reported by the fire department.
A spokesperson for the Lee County Port Authority told WINK, a CNN affiliate, that there were around 3,500 cars that got perished by the time the fire was put out.
According to Melinda Avni, Florida Forestry Service of Caloosahatchee’s Mitigation Specialist, they called the fire department around 5:00 pm to extinguish the fire, and around that time, about 20 vehicles are affected.
Avni also said that by the time firefighters arrived at the area, around a hundred cars are already on fire, and she was not able to monitor the numbers since then. She added that even from a miles away around Fort Myers, a cloud of thick, black smoke can still be seen. The city is home to about 82,000 residents in the southwestern part of Florida.
Several fire departments with the help from the Florida Forestry Services provide both above and ground support.
In a Facebook post, the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office’s aviation unit said it provided no less than 80 airdrops.
The forestry service declared the fire was under control by Saturday at 10:30 am, around 18 hours from when it started.
The shrubs around the overflow site were set ablaze and was a catalyst for the spread of the fire. Other than that no facilities at the airport were damaged and no injuries reported during the incident.
The cause of the fire is still yet to be determined.
Meanwhile, Arlene Salac, spokesperson for Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), said the incident didn’t hamper any ground or air operations at the airport.
Through a Facebook post, the airport gave thanks to all authorities and organizations that helped its Aircraft Rescue & Fire Fighting department in dealing with the emergency.