CHICAGO — Fire officials are investigating what sparked a two-alarm parking garage fire on Chicago’s Near West Side.
According to Chicago fire, the fire broke out in a parking garage of a multi-residential complex in the 700 block of S. Ashland, near Rush University Medical Center.
The blaze destroyed more than a dozen vehicles. Fire officials said the blaze likely started as a single-vehicle fire, with flames rapidly spreading to the roofs of neighboring cars.
“Our guys made an aggressive attack to put out the fire, but it got into the roof of the parking garage, so we had to pull our guys out and elevate the alarm,” said Assistant Deputy Fire Commissioner Donald Walker.
The roof of the parking garage collapsed as a result of the blaze. While the parking structure is not attached to nearby residential units, residents worried the fire would spread to their homes.
Witness Piper Hawkins-Green said she heard an explosion, which prompted her to come outside her home.
“I thought the car was being picked up and I thought it was strange to hear the popping, coupled with the yelling of the firefighter,” she said. “When I opened the door, I saw the truck and the flames spewing out.”
Resident Malvika Shree told WGN News she bought a car about three months back.
“Now it’s all gone,” Shree said.
The fire also destroyed Jitin Srivastava’s vehicle, but he said he is thankful that no one was harmed.
“The car is gone, but we are safe,” Srivastava said. “The family is safe.”