Fire rips through tire business in Gardena

GARDENA, Calif. (KABC) -- A massive fire erupted at a tire business in Gardena early Wednesday morning.

The blaze at the Firestone shop was reported at around 2:20 a.m. in the 1000 block of West Gardena Boulevard. The intense second-alarm fire produced thick, black smoke and noxious fumes.

An area resident reported hearing loud explosions from the scene.

Strong winds made the firefight difficult by pushing the flames in the wrong direction.

"The westerly wind was pushing the fire to two exposed businesses, so their aggressive attack helped save the two structures that were exposed initially," said Deputy Chief Anthony Whittle with the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Residents were worried that the blaze was going to spread.

"You could see it and the sparks were flying so hard, that I thought it might catch something else on fire because the wind was blowing the sparks and they were like this big around," said Valerie Barbour, a Gardena resident.

Firefighters were able to save the adjacent structures from the fire, containing most of the damage to the tire business. No injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.
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