Football fans got more than an eyeful during Sunday’s Miami Dolphins vs. New England Patriots game — with more than a few taking to social media to show puffy plumes of smoke billowing over Hard Rock Stadium.
According to Miami-Dade Fire Rescue: “Sunday afternoon at 1:28 p.m., over 10 … units responded to a fire at a remote parking lot outside the Hard Rock Stadium. Fire crews arrived to find multiple vehicles on fire that were parked at the remote parking lot.
“Firefighters immediately worked to contain and place the fire under control.”
No injuries were reported. As of Monday afternoon, a Miami-Dade Fire Rescue spokesperson said what caused the eight cars to catch fire is still under investigation.
Minutes after Miami-Dade Fire Rescue would have arrived outside the stadium, ESPN’s NFL Nation reporter Marcel Louis-Jacques from his vantage point inside the stadium tweeted: “Something is smoking over behind the NorthWest [sic] corner of Hard Rock Stadium … not sure if it’s a fire but it’s gotten thicker over the past five minutes.”
Scott Dellorfano, who lives in Jupiter, said he hadn’t seen the smoke from inside the stadium and wasn’t aware his 2019 Mercedes-Benz S63 had been among the destroyed until he approached the chaotic parking lot. He said about four or five cars in the row where he parked were burned, in addition to others in a nearby row.
“It was burnt to the ground … It was just gone, the wheels were gone, there was nothing left,” he said.
Dellorfano said a security guard who was monitoring the lot told him he believed someone pushed a grill that was still lit underneath his or her car, eventually causing the flames to consume that car and the others.
Hard Rock Stadium officials arranged for a cab to take Dellorfano to the nearby hotel where he was staying, he said.
An email to the stadium’s parking administrator seeking information was not returned Monday afternoon.
The popular media company Only in Dade, which posts viral videos, memes and more on social media, offered a closer look at cars aflame with thick, black smoke billowing upward. The clip was posted at 2:13 p.m., and four hours later had already racked up more than 10,000 views.