London Luton Airport (LTN) has been closed following a fire that broke out in the hub’s multi-story parking garage, causing a “significant structural collapse.”
Luton Airport has suspended all flights until at least 3 p.m. on Wednesday. It’s believed at least 140 flights due to arrive and depart the airport have been canceled. According to reports, the disruptions could affect up to 40,000 passengers.
Passengers are advised not to travel to the airport and should contact the airline they’re due to fly with for further information on their flight.
The most recent statement from Luton Airport shared to social media said, “Emergency services remain on the scene following last night’s fire in Terminal Car Park 2. Our priority remains supporting the emergency services and the safety of our passengers and staff. We’re working hard to get the airport operational as soon as possible. All flights are currently suspended until 3 pm on Wednesday 11th October.”
“Passengers are advised not to travel to the airport at this time,” the airport continued, ” … as access remains severely restricted.”
The fire swept through the third floor of Luton’s new terminal car park two, after a vehicle caught fire shortly before 9 p.m. on Tuesday.
Unconfirmed videos on social media show what appears to be a parking garage ceiling collapsing, followed by an explosion.
Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue service was alerted at 8:47 p.m. local time; the rapidly escalating fire was declared a major incident at 9:38 p.m.
Speaking to the BBC, fire chief Andy Hopkinson said that thankfully no members of the public had been harmed in the fire and that, currently, there was “no intelligence to suggest it was anything other than an accidental fire.”
According to Hopkinson, the parking garage did not have a sprinkler system fitted. It is believed that up to 1,200 vehicles may have been damaged during the fire, though Hopkinson also reiterated that a “substantial number” of vehicles were unscathed. The fire service is currently working to install a ramp to help remove the cars.
Hopkinson told the BBC: “There is a substantial number that are not damaged, and our focus as well is can we remove those vehicles safely without causing any danger to the responders.”
Home to EasyJet, Luton Airport is roughly 30 miles North of the center of London and is the U.K.’s fifth-largest airport.
Thousands of passengers face disruption after a vehicle fire caused significant damage to a car park at London Luton Airport. Travelers are advised not to travel to the airport and to contact the airline they’re due to fly with for updates.
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