PEMBROKE PARK, FLA. (WSVN) - Crews found themselves locked in a fierce firefight when flames tore through a South Florida business.
On Tuesday, Broward Sheriff Fire Rescue was dispatched to 2930 SW 30th Ave. in Pembroke Park due to reports of a commercial structure fire.
The building was said to be a business that manufactures wetsuits.
“When units arrived, they found heavy smoke coming from a commercial building,” said Broward Sheriff Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Michael Kane.
Upon arrival, firefighters were met with heavy, acrid smoke coming from the business.
The primary chemical involved in the manufacturing process of wetsuits is neoprene, which is a rubberized material and very toxic when it burns.
Crews worked to attack the aggressive flames.
“We had about 100 firefighters fighting this fire,” said Kane.
Firefighters were exposed to extremely high temperatures, reaching approximately 500 – 600° at the floor until the fire was brought under control.
Kane said they had it under control within 90 minutes, and the fire was declared out after two hours.
“It was all flames and smoke coming out,” said Monique Swissa.
The owners of some family businesses that surrounded the plaza were shocked by what had occurred as they processed the damage to their stores.
Swissa and her husband have a leather goods business.
“We have all our leather there, our handbags. Everything was damaged,” said Swissa.
“The roofs were on fire and the glass was broken,” said Swissa’s daughter.
Several adjacent buildings to the building fire were spared from damage by the quick response and bold actions of the firefighters.
She won’t know the extent of the damage until officials clear the area.
No injuries were reported.
The State Fire Marshal will be investigating how the business caught fire.
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