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21 March 2024, 17:29

Luton Airport Car Park Fire: Accidental Blaze Destroys 1,400 Vehicles Due to Electrical Fault

In a shocking incident at Luton Airport, a fire that led to the destruction of more than 1,400 vehicles has been deemed accidental, according to a comprehensive report. The blaze, which commenced in Terminal Car Park 2 around 20:45 BST on the 10th of October, escalated rapidly, causing widespread panic and damage.

The investigation, a collaborative effort between Bedfordshire’s fire and police services, pinpointed an electrical fault or a component failure in a diesel vehicle in motion as the most probable cause. The vehicle, quickly engulfed by flames, led to the fire spreading uncontrollably to adjacent parked cars.

At the height of the disaster, over 100 firefighters were mobilized to combat the inferno, which resulted in a temporary grounding of all aircraft operations until the following day. A spokesperson from the fire service outlined the sequence of events, noting that the fire originated in the engine bay of the moving vehicle due to an electrical malfunction, subsequently leaping to other parts of the vehicle and nearby cars despite the owner’s efforts to quell the flames.

Contrary to potential speculation, the report clarified that the vehicle at the epicenter of the blaze was powered by diesel, ruling out electric or hybrid vehicles as the source. This distinction has been crucial in understanding the fire’s origin and progression.

The fire declaration as a major incident prompted a coordinated response to manage the situation effectively and safeguard critical infrastructure, including the adjacent car parks and the Luton DART. Although a man was initially arrested in connection to the fire, he was later released without any charges.

Luton Airport officials have expressed their relief at the findings of the investigation. The airport is currently undergoing the arduous task of clearing and demolishing the significantly damaged car park structure, a decision made after evaluating the extensive structural damage. The demolition process began in January following the determination that the car park was unsound.

As the airport continues to recover from this event, the flames’ ferocity not only led to the partial collapse of the car park but also highlighted the unforeseen dangers of electrical and component failures in vehicles. A detailed incident report is anticipated to be published later in the summer, which many hope will offer further insights and preventive measures to avert such catastrophes in the future.

Notes to the editor

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