"It snowed in Lakeland today," Lakeland Linder Regional Airport Director Gene Conrad said.
In a matter of minutes, the NOAA Hurricane Hunters' hangar, which will be the new home for nine of their aircraft, turned into a giant bubble bath.
The Hurricane Hunters, contractors and fire inspectors watched as foam rained down from the ceiling. The foam is designed to suppress flames, should one of the aircraft filled with fuel catch fire.
The city's fire inspector said the test exceeded expectations, filling the hangar up to the necessary level in half the time required by code. In the event of a fire, the foam could fill the entire 58,000-square-foot hangar up to the 60-foot-tall ceiling. The foam fire suppression system is the first of its kind in Lakeland.
The entire hangar has been built from start to finish in the last five months, as the Hurricane Hunters prepare to move their fleet from MacDill Airforce Base. They are expected to be ready to fly by the start of hurricane season.
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