Seven Semis Set On Fire, Police Searching For Suspectby Jana Ritter - Published: 8/01/2016
Police are searching for a male suspect who is believed to have set at least seven semi-trailer trucks on fire early Sunday morning in Brooklyn, NY. While authorities still have little information about the person behind the incident, a truck driver who works in the area says fires like these have been happening for months, especially during night hours when most companies are closed. Private investigators are working together with police on the case and a witness (who wishes to remain anonymous) has come forward saying that she saw a box truck pull up to the location, a man exit out of the passenger side and then break into at least one of the tractors set on fire. “The guy got out, he was short, I’d say 5’7”, 5’9”; kind of chubby. He had on all black; a black hoodie,” she said.
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The trucks were parked in an industrial area of Brooklyn along Stanley Ave and Linwood and Chestnut streets. The area is known as a common location for trucks to park overnight and often many truck drivers sleep in their cabs, especially when the job requires them to be away from home and designated commercial truck parking areas are getting harder to find across the US. Fortunately, no truck drivers were actually sleeping in the trucks targeted in this most recent incident. The smoked out remnants of truck beds were first discovered at around 2:50 am along Stanley Avenue, followed by additional burning trucks found on Linwood and Chestnut streets. All of the damaged trucks were 18-wheelers, and the cab portions of the trucks were all damaged with the trailer portions left unscathed.
The anonymous witness reported that she had been on Stanley Avenue just before 3 a.m., when she saw an unmarked box truck pull up and a man get out of the passenger side appearing at first to be breaking into one of the parked tractor-trailers. “A man got out of a regular box truck, out of the passenger side. He came out of the truck, he walked right here to the passenger side of the tractor-trailer, busted the windows, and next thing I know there was an explosion,” the witness said. “It was not random at all,” the witness said. “Someone wants to close these trailers down.”
It took firefighters several hours to put all the fires out and the blaze left mirrors melted, steering wheels destroyed and some roofs completely burned off the cabs. Charred mattresses were still left all over the ground as of late Sunday and local truck drivers were left feeling uneasy about sleeping in their cabs. “I’m probably not going to get much sleep if I decide to stay here after seeing that,” said truck driver Roberto Lopez. “Usually when you come to a city like these, people knock on the door and I ignore it. Now I won’t,” added driver T.J. Wyatt.