UPDATE 20:45 — Crews extinguished a fire that destroyed more than 70 vehicles outside Temple at a popular family attraction.
“It looked like something out of a war zone,” said John Bessick, a veteran who came to the pumpkin patch earlier and helped evacuate families. “Since I have PTSD, it’s been pretty annoying.”
Bessick said he and a friend were in their vehicle about to leave when they first noticed the fire – then the vehicles started to explode.
“We had a few babies and a few strollers trying to get out,” Bessick said as he and his friend helped evacuate people trying to leave the exit on Bob White Road.
A Bell County spokesperson said in a shared statement that at least 73 vehicles were destroyed in the fire.
Although the cause of the fire is still under investigation, initial reports “indicate that the fire may have started from an improperly discarded cigarette in the parking lot,” the statement said. .
Officials said 18 agencies responded to the farm shortly after 1 p.m. when the first call was made for help.
For families in other parts of the pumpkin patch, it all happened so quickly.
“We had just gotten here and were about to eat, and I saw a cloud of smoke coming over the building,” Colby Sanders said of the fire. “People started running towards the parking lot and then we know it’s all on fire.”
Sanders and his wife Katie traveled from Franklin to visit the pumpkin patch at the Robinson family farm.
First responders said no one was hurt by the explosions and fires.
#UPDATE The fire at the Robinson family farm has been extinguished. The owners tell me it started as a small fire which they tried to put out with a fire extinguisher, but it quickly spread through the grass. No word yet on what caused it. @25NewsKXXV pic.twitter.com/thOC20xW4E
— Trenton Hooker (@trentonhooker) October 15, 2022
Four firefighters and two civilians were treated for heat-related illness at the scene and one person had an anxiety attack, officials said.
Helen Robinson, one of the farm owners, said the family was grateful no one was injured or killed in the fire. She said to 25 News his family’s thoughts are with his clients.
The family announced on Facebook that the farm will be closed tomorrow, but will reopen on October 22 and extend an additional weekend this season.
This is the first season for the Robinson family in the new location outside the city limits of Temple.
The family opened their farm to visitors in 2013, attracting thousands of visitors each year for their pumpkin patch and family activities.
Still, the loss of a reliable vehicle couldn’t come at a worse time for families like the Sanders.
“It’s tough. I have a truck and we both have jobs,” Sanders said. “We’re going to have to figure out how she’s going to get back to work.”
BELL COUNTY, Texas – More than 30 vehicles were destroyed in a fire Saturday at Robinson Family Farm in Temple.
Police asked the public to avoid the area.
The cause of the fire was not immediately known. Owners say 25 News it started as a small fire under a car that they tried to put out with a fire extinguisher, but quickly spread through the grass.
No injuries were reported.
The fire has been extinguished, but authorities continue to monitor hot spots.
Robinson Family Farm, a well-known tourist attraction that attracts thousands of visitors each year, includes a pumpkin patch and many other attractions.
This is one of two locations of the Robinson family farm in Temple. This one is located at Bob White Road.
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