Travellers faced a seemingly unprecedented situation last night at Pearson International Airport as the travel hub filled with smoke due to a small fire. The fire, which reportedly started near a security checkpoint located in Pearson Airport's Terminal 1, forced all U.S. flights departing from the area to be cancelled.
Hundreds were evacuated as firefighters worked to put out the fire. Emergency services reportedly arrived on scene at around 6:30 PM with the blaze being put out just before 7:30 PM, Global News reports. Police later announced that the flames had been extinguished while cautioning that water and smoke still filled the building.
Thankfully, no one was seriously injured. However, police later stated that people had been treated for “smoke-related injuries” and that one woman had been transferred to hospital but remained in stable condition.
Outbound international & inbound arrivals processing at Terminal 1 has resumed. We thank passengers for their patience as we put safety first. Outbound US flights from T1 are cancelled tonight. Please check your flight status with your airline before leaving for the airport. https://t.co/WeSSuTe8Dn— Toronto Pearson (@TorontoPearson) March 18, 2019
As for delays, travellers are being cautioned to check their flight statuses before making their way to the airport to ensure that their arrangements have not been cancelled or delayed. Pearson International Airport receives more traffic than any other airport in Canada, making this particular incident all the more inconvenient.
According to Peel Regional Police, the cause of the fire will be thoroughly investigated despite the fact that at this time there is no suspicion of arson. The fire caused numerous inbound flights to be stranded on the tarmac for hours as the crews worked to put out the flames.
The fire at Pearson comes at a notably unsettling time for travellers. Just last week, Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed killing all 149 passengers onboard including 18 Canadians. The accident resulted in the grounding of all Boeing 737 MAX 8 modeled planes.