Let’s hope they were all insured.
While we were all out celebrating New Years Eve, a massive fire erupted at a multi-story parking garage in the UK next to the Echo Arena in Liverpool, destroying 1,400 cars. According to the BBC, investigators believe the inferno was accidentally caused by an engine in an old Land Rover that caught on fire. The blaze soon spread, engulfing the entire parking garage in flames. Luckily no one was seriously injured, but the widespread damage could cost insurers around $2.7 million in car payouts alone according to City A.M.
As many as 21 fire trucks attended the scene late afternoon on New Years Eve, but firefighters were still tackling the blaze the following morning 10 hours later. Most of the cars destroyed in the blaze were owned by attendants at the nearby Liverpool International Horse Show, which had to be cancelled. Hundreds were left stranded overnight, and four dogs were rescued from a car parked on the top floor. No animals were hurt in the blaze, but two people were treated for minor smoke inhalation. A woman also hurt their hand while running from the flames. "The flames were just shooting out of the engine and coming past the tires," Sue Wright told the BBC, who spotted the Land Rover on fire.
It looked like a ball of fire on the front of the car and it was producing a lot of smoke. We just left everything in the car - handbags, telephone, cash - and just went. I saw one car on fire but it was clear it was ferocious and spreading."
No sprinkler systems were installed in the multi-story parking lot according to Merseyside’s chief fire officer Dan Stephens. "I believe a sprinkler system would certainly have suppressed the fire," he said. "It would definitely have limited the spread and given us a much better opportunity to put the fire out before it spread to the extent it did." The parking lot’s structure is said to be unstable, but hasn’t collapsed as firefighters remain at the scene.
Photos shared on Facebook by Merseyside Fire and Rescue show the and extent of the damage caused by the fire that reduced the parking garage to an automotive graveyard of burnt out wrecks. Let’s hope everyone affected was insured.