Authorities Investigate Miami Car Dealership Fire

Caretaker and dog barely escaped flames: Fire Official

By Julia Bagg and Brian Hamacher
|  Friday, Dec 14, 2012  |  Updated 9:51 PM EDT
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Firefighters are trying to figure out what sparked flames at a used-car lot where suspicious fires have happened before. NBC 6 reporter Julia Bagg spoke to Mario Garzon, who escaped the flames.

Firefighters are trying to figure out what sparked flames at a used-car lot where suspicious fires have happened before. NBC 6 reporter Julia Bagg spoke to Mario Garzon, who escaped the flames.

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Authorities Investigate Miami Car Dealership Fire

Miami Fire Rescue spokesman Lt. Ignatius Carroll talks about a fire at a Miami car dealership.
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Authorities are investigating a fire that swept through a Miami used-car dealership late Thursday night.

Firefighters responded to the Bolufe Enterprises dealership at 5601 West Flager Street just before midnight after receiving multiple 911 calls of smoke and flames coming from a car port in the rear of the business, Miami Fire Rescue spokesman Lt. Ignatius Carroll said.

When firefighters arrived, they found three cars in the covered area fully engulfed in flames. They quickly extinguished the fire and when the smoke cleared, they discovered a small shed with an air conditioner and mattress, Carroll said.

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Mario Garzon, who lives in the shed with his dog and watches over the dealership, said he heard a popping noise and was able to get out just before the fire spread to the shed. He was also able to get his dog out safely.

"I jumped over the fence and ran away," Garzon said.

Witness Pablo Padron said he was walking his dog when the blaze broke out.

"I heard a big bang and all of the sudden I looked to the left and I see black smoke everywhere, the flames were coming from the car dealership so I ran, I heard dogs, I heard people screaming," Padron said.

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Carroll said there have been two "very suspicious fires" at the dealership in the past, and investigators are working to determine the cause of the latest one.

"Because we've had multiple fires here, we're gonna be looking at all possibilities here," Carroll said. "There's a lot of things that we need to look into and hopefully the gentleman that lives here will be able to provide some information."

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