Car fire on 8th St. parking deck

Published: Feb. 4, 2015 at 10:58 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 15, 2015 at 4:32 AM EST
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Photo: Leslie Bowery (Facebook)
Photo: Leslie Bowery (Facebook)
Photo: Leslie Bowery (Facebook)
Photo: Leslie Bowery (Facebook)
Photo: Leslie Bowery (Facebook)
Photo: Leslie Bowery (Facebook)

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - A car bursts into flames on the 8th street parking deck on the MCV campus, bringing part of downtown Richmond to a stand-still Wednesday night.

Plumes of smoke were spotted streaming from the 8th street parking garage. There was so much smoke, fire crews first thought there were multiple vehicles on fire.
"At the time you couldn't really tell because it's a big open area where it's coming from," said Richmond fire Lt. Christopher Armstrong.
Within minutes, Richmond fire and VCU police had the deck surrounded. Crews swept every level of the garage and found a single vehicle on the 4th floor fully engulfed in flames. Fortunately no one was inside.

While it took just 20 minutes to put the fire out, it kept people waiting outside for more than an hour.
"We're just waiting to get in our cars so we can get home," said Michelle Sicher, whose car was parked in the garage.
Sicher and Anthony Russell, who both work the main hospital campus next door, walked out to head home for the night when they spotted the commotion.
"I knew something was wrong," said Sicher.
With both of their cars parked in the garage, they were worried.

"The first thing I think is my car involved," Said Russell.

But fire crews' quick work kept it from spreading, something Lt. Armstrong says could have easily happened in an enclosed space filled with vehicles. 
"When that gas tank is compromised, the gas can leak out and then as the gas leak out it can ignite then catch fire then catch another vehicle on fire," said Lt. Armstrong.

The cause of the car fire is still under investigation. 

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