Firefighters squelched a fire in a storage area behind Bally’s Total Fitness Gym (1720 Sheepshead Bay Road), adjacent to the Voorhies Avenue municipal parking lot this morning.
The fire broke out shortly before 10:00 a.m. and was quickly put out by Ladder 169. A plastic storage shed behind the gym melted and its contents – tiles, air conditioning supplies and other equipment - destroyed. The flames grew tall enough to lap at the foliage of a nearby tree, withering the branches. A car parked in the lot just feet away from the fire had minor damage, with the heat melting its plastic license plate frame and covering it in water and ash.
FDNY officials on the scene said the cause of the fire was undetermined at this time, but it was likely something small like a lit cigarette.
The fire, though small, serves as a reminder to residents that New York City is in the midst of a drought, with officials consistently warning of the dangers even a small heat source can spark. Brush fires have recently broken out in Long Island, Staten Island and Central Park. The city is currently under a Red Flag Warning, meaning we’re in critical fire conditions with dry weather and strong winds.
Sheepshead Bites reminds readers to be careful disposing any burning debris, including charcoal from grills. Cigarette smokers should ensure their butts are thoroughly extinguished before throwing them on the ground or in a garbage can.