Fire investigators are blaming static electricity for starting a fire that destroyed part of the Quisqueya mattress store at 3101 E. 7th Ave. in Ybor City this afternoon, Tampa Fire Rescue said.
The Fire Marshal’s Office released the incident report this evening, saying that based on an interview with the manager of the business, an imbalance of electrical charges within or on the surface of the foam material used to make mattresses caused the material to ignite.
The estimated loss to the structure and its contents is $200,000.
Both people inside the store at the time of the fire were able to escape safely and call 911, fire rescue said. No injuries were reported.
Approximately 15 units and 40 firefighters responded to the two-alarm fire at the brick building. Firefighters who tried to enter the store were turned back by heavy flames and smoke, and the decision was made to go into a “defensive mode” and fight the fire from outside, fire rescue said.