Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Investigation under way in fire that destroyed paratransit bus in Brooksville

BROOKSVILLE — A paratransit bus en route to relieve another driver caught fire and burned to its frame Friday at the Hernando County Transportation Services office on Jefferson Street.

The small bus, a 2010 Turtle Top Terra Transport, was a total loss. There were no passengers on board, and the driver escaped unharmed.

The county immediately pulled in the other two buses, which were of the same year and model. All three were acquired under a state grant, said Dennis Dix, the county's transportation coordinator. The other vehicles were to be inspected before going back on the road.

There was no impact on the schedule of the paratransit system, Dix said. There are spare buses available when one or more are out of service.

"We don't know what the cause is yet, but we're looking into it,'' he said Monday.

The paratransit buses serve disabled residents who live within three-quarters of a mile of the fixed routes of THE Bus, the county's mass transit system, but who cannot make it to bus stops.

The bus fire caught the attention of employees at nearby Day Metal Products. The smoke drew office manager Suzanne Volce out of the front office.

"We went back there, and there was this big black plume of smoke, and then all of a sudden an explosion happened,'' Volce said.

Several more followed, but she said fire units got the blaze under control quickly, so the fire never crossed the fence onto the company's property.

The county's bus operator, McDonald Transit Associates, is insured to cover the loss, Dix said.

Shaun Kusnierczak, the county's transportation grants controller, said he wasn't sure what the explosion sounds might have been because the fuel tank did not ignite.

Barbara Behrendt can be reached at behrendt@tampabay.com or (352) 848-1434.

Investigation under way in fire that destroyed paratransit bus in Brooksville 08/26/13 [Last modified: Monday, August 26, 2013 9:48pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Nearly 40 hospitalized on first day Sunset Music Festival, on pace to exceed last year

    News

    To reduce the number of medical emergencies this year, sponsors of the Sunset Music Festival promised heightened security and safety measures during this weekend's event at Raymond James Stadium.

    Thousands of people crowd the main stage at the Sunset Music Festival on the grounds of the Raymond James Stadium parking lot in Tampa. Temperature at the time of this photo was 92F [Saturday, May 28, 2017] [Photo Luis Santana | Times]
  2. Woman killed in overnight Temple Terrace apartment fire, city says

    Fire

    TEMPLE TERRACE — A woman died early Sunday as a result of a fire at an apartment complex, city officials said.

  3. Video: Indianapolis 500 drivers in fiery crash somehow walk away uninjured

    Auto racing

    Scott Dixon and Jay Howard avoided injury in a spectacular crash - or what Dixon labeled "a wild ride" afterward - during the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday.

  4. Homeland security chief defends Kushner's alleged proposal for 'back channel' to the Russians as 'a good thing"

    National

    Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, the lone administration official to speak out publicly about reports that Jared Kushner sought a back channel to communicate with the Russian government, defended the move, saying it was a "good thing" for the U.S. government.

    Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law, listens during a meeting with small business leaders at the White House on Jan. 30. [Washington Post photo by Jabin Botsford]
  5. After hard charging on health care in 2016, Marco Rubio is slow, careful

    Blogs

    As a presidential candidate, Marco Rubio pitched an Obamacare replacement and tore into Donald Trump for not having one. "What is your plan? What is your plan on health care? You don't have a plan," the Florida senator aggressively challenged in a February 2016 debate.