TV Marti's Set Catches Fire After Cigarette Thrown in Trash Can

The newsroom of Radio and TV Martí was set ablaze Sunday, but not by any angry pro-Castro forces. It was an inside job. Well, an accidental one. Apparently the fire started after someone threw a lit cigarette in a trash can.

Though the fire caused some problems for the U.S. government-controlled broadcaster, no transmissions were interrupted.

According to WSVN, the cigarette caught fire in a trashcan near a designated smoking area outside. The blaze was so intense it shattered windows in the newsroom. Smoke crept inside, and the newsroom's sprinkler system went off. The staff was evacuated.

However, some staffers were asked to work form home Monday, but according to the Miami Herald, the station was "at 50 to 75 percent of normal operations." Staff expected to be totally back to normal today.

Some parts of the broadcast schedule had to be rearranged, but neither the TV nor the radio signal was interrupted.

Radio and TV Martí are government-funded stations that broadcast into Cuba with the directive of providing a counterbalance to the communist nation's government-controlled media.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Kyle Munzenrieder