Five years goes up in flames

The smoke rising up from the Mile Hill Drive Public Storage building Friday afternoon came from a 1953 Cadillac, which the owner called his “life-long dream.”

The car’s owner, who would only identify himself as William, was driving into a storage unit at the facility on Mile Hill Drive when his car caught fire.

The storage unit’s manager, who declined to identify himself as well, said he saw the car enter the driveway and nothing seemed wrong at the time.

“I heard a boom,” he told firefighters. “It was almost like something hit the building ... a couple minutes later it was on fire.”

That boom was likely the car’s tire bursting. Soon the car was consumed in flames, with a plume of smoke rising in the air and seen by high schoolers heading home for the afternoon.

William was upset to lose his classic car, which he’s been working on for five years.

“I was getting ready to take it to a show,” he said.

He watched the smoke drift off his car as firefighters crawled around it and sprayed foamy water inside and out.

The foam leaked out of the bottom of the car and the trunk.

The inside of the car was blackened and scorched from the flames.

Deputy Fire Marshal Tina Turner examined the scene, but said she did not have a definitive cause for the fire, calling it “a multitude of everything.”

Turner noted the car’s back, driver-side tire rubbed against the exhaust pipe. After the tire blew William drove a little farther.

“It might have caught a spark on the rim,” she said, noting that the gas tank could have had a pinhole. “It was a multitude of things converging all at once.”

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