MCPS Technical Services Department building catches fire

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A building that houses the Marion County Public Schools Technical Services Department caught fire shortly before 8 p.m. Saturday night.

According to Ocala Fire Rescue, units consisting of Engines 1, 3, 4 and 7, Rescue 3, Tower 1, Squad 7, Battalion Chief 11 and a security officer were dispatched to the area of ​​SW 10th Street and SW 7th Road in 7:53 p.m. due to reports of a fire near the Marion Technical College.

A column of black smoke was visible as units moved towards the scene of the fire. At 7:54 p.m., firefighters arrived at 1101 SW 7th Road and observed that the MCPS Technical Services Department building was on fire.

Firefighters observed a column of smoke as they approached the scene of the fire (Photo courtesy of Ocala Fire Rescue)
MCPS Technical Services Department building catches fire 2
The MCPS Technical Services Department building was covered in smoke (Photo courtesy of Ocala Fire Rescue)

Members of the OFR team breached the outer fence to gain access to the property where the smoke-covered building was located.

MCPS Technical Services Department building catches fire 3
Several OFR units were on hand to fight the blaze (Photo courtesy of Ocala Fire Rescue)

There was no visibility in the surroundings when firefighters entered the unoccupied building. Firefighters fought their way through the interior of the building in search of the fire, and the “seed of the fire” was located in the rear center of the building.

MCPS Technical Services Department building catches fire
The fire originated in the rear center of the building (Photo courtesy of Ocala Fire Rescue)
MCPS Technical Services Department building catches fire 7
Firefighters moved quickly to tackle the blaze (Photo courtesy of Ocala Fire Rescue)

Firefighters attacked the flames and managed to contain the fire to the area of ​​origin. Shortly before 8:30 p.m., the incident was brought under control.

The cause of the fire is unknown.

Engine 10, Ladder 2, and District 1 from Marion County Fire Rescue assisted with fire operations, and ALS 1 from MCFR was on standby. The Ocala Police Department also responded.

According to MCPS, about 16 employees work inside the building. Employees were not in the building at the time of the fire and no one was injured.

Employees will be relocated until necessary repairs are completed. No property damage estimate is available at this time.

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