100 Firefighters Called to Extinguish 2-Alarm Fire at World Trade Center Site

The Sept. 11 Memorial briefly closed to visitors Wednesday morning, after this smoky fire erupted in a storage container next to the Sept. 11 Memorial Museum. Photo by Manon Chevallerau

More than two dozen FDNY units and 100 firefighters were called to the World Trade Center site on Wednesday morning, after a fire started inside a storage container.

Firefighters were called to the scene at 11:28 a.m. for the two-alarm container fire, in a construction area just north of the Sept. 11 Memorial Museum. The fire was under control at 12:19 p.m., an FDNY spokesman said. The Sept. 11 memorial briefly closed to visitors, according to the memorial's Twitter account.

Smoke from the container rose to dramatic heights, according to a visitor from New Jersey who was taking a helicopter ride near the site when the fire broke out.

"When we first went up in the air it looked like it might be steam, but when we came back you saw it all grey and dark black," said Chris Piehler, who went down to the site after the helicopter ride to see what was happening on the ground. "You could really see it billowing out."

The swift response of the fire department was impressive from the air, Piehler said.

"We were able to see all these lights from out up in the sky," he said.

The number of firefighters sent to the scene was due in part to the size of the WTC site, the FDNY spokesman said.

No injuries were reported in the fire, and the cause is still under investigation.