A minivan caught fire near Beebe Lake and then exploded on Friday evening as dozens of students watched and smoke billowed over the lake.
Cornell Police and the Ithaca Fire Department put out the fire, which excreted smoke over Beebe lake around 6:30 p.m.
Runners planning on using the trail around the lake were diverted elsewhere.
“You don’t want to breathe what’s over there right now,” one policeman said.
Dave Williams ’75 is the owner of the minivan, and said he has parked the van near Beebe lake before.
Once he returned to the van and attempted to leave, the vehicle got caught in the mud created by today’s heavy rain.
Trying in vain to turn his way out of the mud, he stepped out of the car to examine the situation.
“At that point I saw flames under the car, so I obviously bailed,” Williams told The Sun.
As of now, Mr. Williams is unsure of what actually caused the fire.
“I’m mad,” he said. “I didn’t even bring my marshmallows with me!”