Fire breaks out at gun range

11:00 PM, Apr 1, 2013   |    comments
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TAMPA, Florida -- It wasn't the date night the Millers had in mind.

"We were on the pistol range and the place filled with smoke," said Gary Miller.

Hillsborough County Fire Rescue units responded to a report of a fire at the Florida Firearms Academy on West Hillsborough Avenue in Town N' Country around 7 p.m. Fire crews found a large building about 5,000 square feet that had heavy smoke coming from it.

"We were told to put down our guns and leave quickly. It was hard to breathe," Gary told 10 News.

Everyone was able to get out of the building safely.

Witnesses said smoke started coming out of the vents. The first 911 call came in just before 7 p.m. A second alarm was called due to the size of the building and conditions. The live ammunition and weapons inside the building were not involved in the fire.

Fire rescue crews had a difficult time finding where the fire was coming from due to very low visibility. A special ventilation truck was requested from Tampa Fire Rescue to be able to ventilate the building and increase visibility. Then, crews found the area that was burning and put the fire out.

The area that was involved was at the back of the firing range, including the ceiling.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. There are no reports of injuries. The estimated cost of the damage is around $400,000.

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