A piece of firefighting equipment acquired a year ago may have helped quickly douse a fire that destroyed a private plane and damaged a maintenance hangar at the Santa Maria airport Tuesday afternoon.
A worker inside the hangar suffered minor injuries as emergency crews responded to battle the fire, which sent plumes of smoke into the sky for a short period of time.
The plane was brand new, parked inside a hangar at the airport. When the plane caught fire, the flames also spread to the inside of the hangar. The cause of the fire has not been reported.
A new piece of firefighting equipment called an “ARV” was used by firefighters who responded. They were able to knock down the flames within 15 minutes.
The ARV is capable of carrying 3,000 gallons of water, along with other fire retardant chemicals and foam. The machine is able to move quickly over the airport grounds, responding to fires at a speed of up to 70 miles an hour.
Commercial flights from the airport were not affected by the fire.Slideshow: Plane Fire Damages Santa Maria Airport Hangar