ST. PETE BEACH — Firefighters responded to a minor electrical fire at a St. Pete Beach hotel early Friday morning, thwarting what "could have led to a major fire," according to Fire Marshal Ernie Hand.
Plaza Beach Hotel owner Robert Czyszczon said he believes a faulty electrical transformer across the street was to blame for the 1:30 a.m. fire, as the hotel had a similar incident last year.
Czyszczon said the same transformer blew out last year, causing a surge that ignited his air conditioning units, damaging 11 rooms. This time, seven rooms were damaged, he said.
Hand confirmed the fire was an electrical issue that affected the air conditioning and heating units at Plaza Beach Hotel at 4506 Gulf Boulevard. But he said it's too early to say what caused the electrical issue, and will determine that after investigators file reports on the incident.