PARKER, Fla. (WMBB) — Around 1 a.m. Monday, multiple agencies were called out to the scene of a car crash and structure fire in Parker.
Officials confirm a young male driver, whose name has not been released, was turning off of East Business Highway 98 onto Pitts Avenue.
When he reportedly failed to stop or slow down, he ran over logs, sending the car airborne into a nearby building and a parked pickup truck.
It sparked several explosions that residents say they could hear from their homes.
“I had driven my car down there and then I backed it all the way up because there was just probably six or seven explosions and sending embers all through the air onto people’s roofs and stuff,” nearby resident Delvie Robinson said.
Both vehicles and the building went up in flames, taking fire crews about two hours to put out.
Delvie’s husband, J.A., was the first person to arrive on the scene and says he heard the driver yelling for help.
At first, he was unable to pull the driver out of the burning car, but two other drivers passing by stopped to help in the nick of time.
“The car was rapidly becoming engulfed in flames,” he said. “By the time we got him out, it had already got inside the car on the passenger seat. And by the time we got him out on the ground, the entire car was engulfed in fire. And then it engulfed the building, and the whole thing went down.”
The driver is currently in stable condition at Bay Medical Center, and the investigation is ongoing.
Meanwhile, News13 spoke with the real estate agent for the burned building, and it turns out to be a historical piece of property that the community of Parker has now lost.
“Somewhere in the mid 1800s, some fishermen or boat-savvy guys started boating in and out of that area and built a little depot spot where they can transport other people,” Gulf Real Estate’s Krista Navarro said. “Over many years, the area developed with this history of being a ferry depot during the early 1900s even.”
Navarro says she plans to save what’s left of the building’s history.
“We’re going to try to validate some of the history on the building through the Historical Society and see what we can do to reestablish the old boat depot as we know it to be,” she said.