PASS CHRISTIAN, MS (WLOX) - Firefighters spent all day Monday battling a blaze that engulfed a pile of stored oil spill containment materials in Pass Christian.
Fire Chief Dwight Gordon said the call was made about a Mardi Gras float on fire parked behind Gun-Ho indoor shooting range in Pass Christian. When they arrived on the scene, the fire had grown into an inferno.
Multiple agencies were called to the scene to assist in extinguishing the fire, including an Air National Guard team from Gulfport's Combat Readiness Training Center.
"With the winds, it had blown over into what was a containment boom," said Fire Chief Gordon, referring to the material that is deployed when oil spills on the water.
According to Fire Chief Gordon, his men had inspected the materials just months ago. They found that the materials were most likely unused and were simply being stored for future purposes, which was later confirmed by the property owner Roger Caplinger.
One of Caplinger's tenants, Marcio Borguezan, said this was not the first issue he has experienced at this complex, which houses his granite business and Caplinger's indoor shooting range.
Borguezan said he and Caplinger have had to file multiple malicious mischief reports with the police within the past year due to property damage.
"Trailers, boats, the inside of our shop," said Borguezan. "They break in, they destroy things."
However, Caplinger said the alleged vandals did not get away unseen during a recent visit.
"We caught them last time actually pouring fuel and stuff out," said Caplinger. "Oil and gasoline and that kind of stuff."
Both Caplinger and Borguezan say they wouldn't be surprised to find out that the fire is a result of vandalism. However, for now, it is all speculation until the fire department can conduct a thorough investigation.
Before an investigation could be conducted, the fire had to be stopped.
"Our main thing is trying to get it cooled down enough to where we can actually get into it deep enough to actually get it put out," said Fire Chief Gordon.
According to Fire Chief Gordon, the fire was contained Sunday night and is not a threat to the surrounding areas. No one was hurt during the incident. He is expecting a visit from the Department of Environmental Quality to inspect the site.