Fortunately, nobody was injured in this brief existence of hell on Earth

A freakishly crazy fire happened last Friday in the overflow lot of the Southwest Florida International Airport, filling the surrounding area with smoke, a bright yellow glow, and damaging some 3,500 rental cars that were parked across a 15-acre area. There is still no official cause of the fire as it is still under investigation, but reports have been flying in that says cars are often parked after being driven for an extended period of time, which could create a very simple but easy to forget fire hazard: hot exhaust sitting just inches above very dry grass. Until an official reason is given, it’s safe to assume this could be the case of what happened.

Southwest Florida International Fire

The fire drew in a response of several fire departments across Lee country while aviation and fire department units neighboring Charlotte and Collier counties chipped in to help battle the hellish blaze. Law enforcement was also on the scene to help direct traffic and send incoming or outgoing travelers to new temporary parking areas away from the fire that was, for a period of time, escalating.

The fire continued to rage across the makeshift parking lot through Friday night and into Saturday morning, at which point first responders were able to get things under control and put out the flames.

There were still some 3,800 rental cars undamaged that were quickly relocated to other areas once the whole ordeal was said and done. Fortunately, nobody was hurt in the fire and while an investigation is still ongoing, this time of year in Florida is generally dry and fairly warm (generally in the 80s), so it’s not that hard to spark a fire, especially when you’re parking cars with hot exhaust over old, dry grass. Perhaps this whole ordeal will persuade the management to invest in a real overflow lot instead of parking cars on grass in the future.

Freak Fire Destroys More than 3500 Cars at the Southwest Florida International Airport
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Robert Moore
Editor-in-Chief and Automotive Expert -
Robert has been an auto enthusiast his entire life. He started working cars at a young age, learning the basics from his father in the home garage on the weekends. As time went on, Robert became more and more interested in cars and convinced his father to teach him how to drive when he was just 13 years old. Robert continued working on cars in his free time and learned as much as he could about engines, transmissions, and car electrical systems, something that only fed his curiosity more and eventually led him to earn a bachelors degree in automotive technology with a primary focus on engine performance and transmission rebuilding.  Read More
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