A weather-related electrical fire caused the Hilton Clearwater Beach to lose power and forced the evacuation of about 1,000 hotel guests this morning.
According to a report from the Tampa Tribune, the 425-room beachfront hotel was without power after the fire started in a first-floor electrical panel. Early indications point toward stormwater affecting the generator.
“The beach got pounded with rain all night long, and we believe water got into the electrical lines,” Clearwater Fire & Rescue Operations Chief Richard Riley told the Tribune. “Obviously, the electrical system worked, shorting itself out and tripping the breakers. That was a good thing.”
Guests were evacuated safety and never in danger. No injuries were reported. Power was restored by Duke Energy later in the morning.