Tulsa playground fire causes more than $100,000 in damage
City of Tulsa crews salvage damaged pieces of playground equipment from a popular park. Part of the jungle gymnasium caught fire causing over $100,000 in damage.
The park is near Charles Page and 41st West Avenue.
The city said this playground was the result of valuable taxpayer and donor money; now the children who live nearby are devastated by the destruction.
City crews came out Friday afternoon in the charred and melted mess and removed anything loose, damaged and sharp.
“It sucks. It makes me really sad. This place has a lot of memories for me,” Aryana Lindsey said.
“It’s for the kids, and it hurts the kids. They don’t have a place to play anymore,” George Medeiros said.
“I have five little boys at my house and everything, well, at my aunt’s,” Jeread Simpson said. “They are here almost every other day.”
“I’m a Marine Corps veteran, and this breaks my heart,” Steve Swift said.
The Tulsa Fire Marshal is investigating after this playground equipment at Zeigler Park, also known as Fort JD Smith Park, caught fire around 4 a.m.
“What civic pride, what personal pride do you have burning a piece of children’s equipment. It’s just madness,” Swift said.
Firefighters from a station next to the park received the call about the fire, came out and saw flames.
“I saw this big fire and I was like wow what happened there and then the fire truck came right after that and it was already engulfed,” Medeiros said.
Investigators said about 25% of it was destroyed.
“Even things that look good, some of them may not be salvageable,” said Tulsa Parks manager Anna America.
Parks director Anna America said that in the best-case scenario, some of this equipment can be saved.
“It’s not just bits of metal and plastic lying around in a field. It was really the heart and the result of a lot of commitment from a lot of people,” America said.
America said a certified playground inspector from the manufacturer will be out early next week to determine if it is safe for children.