Twenty-nine people are displaced after a 3-alarm fire broke out Wednesday afternoon at a Brandon apartment complex.
Hillsborough County Fire Rescue said it received the call around 12:30 p.m. for a fire at the Charleston Landings Apartments.
Smoke and flames started from a second-story building before spreading into its attic, according to a news release. Nearly 30 vehicles, including engines and specialized trucks, responded to help put out the flames. In addition to evacuating people, firefighters say they helped evacuate several dogs, cats, a snake and a bearded lizard.
Emergency crews report no injuries to residents or firefighters, despite 16 units being impacted and 29 people getting displaced. The Red Cross has been contacted to assist those families with food, shelter and other needs.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
WTSP-TV CBS 10 St. Petersburg
The fast-growing Gate Parkway area has been served since last September by firefighters working out of a temporary structure.
But Mayor Lenny Curry, members of the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department and City Council members broke ground Wednesday on $7 million building that will be the new home of Fire Station No. 63.
“In this business, minutes equal lives,” JFRD Chief Keith Powers said at the ceremony. Curry included money for three new fire stations, including No. 63, in the city budget that was approved Tuesday night by City Council.
“Firefighters spend a third of their lives away from home, from their families. So it’s very important that when a station is built -- it’s their second home,” said Randy Wyse, president of the Jacksonville Association of Firefighters.
WJXT-TV 4 Jacksonville
Gadsden County Commissioner Eric Hinson has secured $132,000 in funding for a new building to house Emergency Medical Services, enabling Havana’s residents to receive urgent care during a medical emergency. The current EMS location is structurally unsafe for workers.
Havana Emergency Medical Services will be relocating to a new building after receiving the Gadsden County Board of County Commissioners’ full support. The new EMS facility will be located at 6805 Florida-Georgia Highway, which will allow Havana EMS to remain located in the town.
The facility will include a full kitchen, common area, dining area, two bedrooms, and a bath for $132,000.
The hazardous structural impediments have put a strain on the workers who already operate efficiently with limited resources.
Understanding these difficulties, Commissioner Hinson worked with the Board to secure funds from the 2019-2020 budget for the new building.
WTXL-TV ABC 27 Tallahassee
By day he is a firefighter/paramedic for the city of Tampa, and by night he is a rock 'n' roll drummer for the local band Jack Jagger.
Nick Cedela quickly and quietly packs up the hook and ladder in preparation, the fire alarm could go off any second inside Tampa Fire Rescue Station 19. He’s part of the Marine Division.
“Water rescue, any kind of marine fires, boat fires, we respond to it all,” said Cedela.
But when Cedela isn’t fighting fires, he’s pounding the drums, with his band.
“It’s a great stress relief especially the way I play,” said Cedela.
He said whether it’s a rescue in a boat or a riff on stage, both jobs will make you sweat.
“Anytime you go on stage in front of a crowd full of people it takes a little bit of guts and anytime you do the things we do it takes a little bit of guts and self-checking,” said Cedela.
He said as a first responder you’re always helping others escape danger, but sometimes it’s the responder who needs their own escape.
WFTS-TV ABC 28 Tampa Bay
After Hurricane Sally, when emergency management in Baldwin county, Alabama called Springfield Fire Chief, Brian Eddins, it really struck a chord.
Eddins immediately contacted the fire chief in Callaway, and together they made a plan to meet the needs of Baldwin county residents impacted by Hurricane Sally.
Early Wednesday morning, both the Callaway and Springfield Fire departments teamed up to do a boot drive at the Callaway Walmart from to raise money for Baldwin County residents affected by the storm.
Callaway firefighter, Caleb Clary, said it was only right to do as many came together to help their department after Hurricane Michael.
“During Hurricane Michael with strike teams and FEMA and all that we got all kinds of support from local people, so we’re just trying to help any way we can and send some love their way,” Clary said.
WMBB-TV ABC 13 Panama City
A mobile home in Mulberry is a total loss after it was engulfed in flames early Wednesday morning, Polk Fire Rescue said.
Polk Fire crews responded to the fire at 5:30 a.m. and thought there might be a person inside as half of the trailer was already burning with large flames, authorities said.
Officials said the home was unoccupied at the time of the fire. Polk Fire Rescue has not released the cause of the fire.