MEDLEY (CBSMiami) – Black smoke billowed out of a West-Miami Dade Florida Power & Light plant on Tuesday afternoon.
Chopper4 was over the scene near 6001 NW 70th Avenue.
Miami-Dade Fire said a transformer somehow caught fire, prompting the massive blaze around 4 p.m. Crews fully contained the fire by Tuesday evening.
Roads in the area were temporarily shut down on NW 72nd Ave from 58th Street to 74th Street. Just before 5 p.m., traffic could be seen backed up for miles.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue says the fire presented challenges to its crews.
“The challenges are the electrical component. Obviously, it’s not something small. It is a big area to cover and dealing with the transformer itself with the fuel involved, it can complicate things, but fortunately, we had a nice, coordinated, professional plan of attack with Florida Power & Light,” said Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Lt. Felipe Lay.
FPL spokeswoman Marie Bertot said the fire caused an interruption in power for at least 10,700 Florida Power & Light customers initially.
Crews managed to fully restore electricity by 7:30 p.m.
“At this time it’s under investigation. I don’t have the cause,” said Bertot when asked about what sparked the blaze.
People who work nearby reported hearing a loud noise before losing electricity.
“All of a sudden the lights started flickering and then it went off,” said Gigi Monasterio, who works nearby.
“It happened so fast. I got scared and hit the ground. You’re lucky no one got hurt,” said Michael Steadman.
Miami International Airport officials said the fire prompted a delay for a few minutes but then operations went back to normal.
The cause of the explosion is under investigation. No one was injured in the blaze.