Two-alarm fire destroys car dealership

HOUSTON The fire broke out at West Point Buick on the Katy Freeway near Kirkwood around 3pm. Thick black smoke could be seen for miles across the city. Much of the roof appeared to have caved in.

"We received a call about a warehouse discharging heavy black smoke, when (firefighters) went to make entry, they decided to take a defensive position. There were no injuries to civilians and given the low life hazard risk, we're trying to protect property at this point," said HFD Assistant Chief Karen DuPont.

Arson teams are investigating the blaze. The Houston Fire Department has determined there were no cars inside the structure. It was merely used as a repair shop. At one point there were cars inside, but not at the time of the fire.

General Manager Chris Poulos says two employees heard a popping sound and they quickly evacuated. Those workers got out safely.

Witness Susan Pendleton said it looked like heavy storm clouds had moved in, until she realized it was black smoke filling the sky.

The feeder road in front of the dealership has been closed to traffic. Traffic on the main lanes of the Katy Freeway is moving slowly in the area.

The Tennessee Titans website says team owner Bud Adams, who used to own the Houston Oilers, owns the West Point Buick dealership. In 2005, he was given an award recognizing the dealership in Houston as "dealer of the year."

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