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Neighbors tackle garage fire, officials say safety more important

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Chopper 8 discovered a fire on the east side of Indianapolis Monday morning.

Chopper 8 was at the fire before Indianapolis Fire Department crews arrived.

As of 6:30 a.m., the fire was out. It’s unclear what started the garage fire.

Officials said the garage fire started from the outside and made its way inside the garage. It grew so quickly, that it lit up the sky.

As Chopper 8 was over the fire, people could be seen interacting with it.

“It was a very rapidly moving fire as you can see by the progress of your video that you guys showed us. So again, there is a danger in trying to approach a fire of that magnitude,” said Rita Reith of the Indianapolis Fire Department.

The homeowner, Brandie Crawford, said a man in the video 24-Hour News had showed her is her neighbor who was throwing buckets of water on the blaze.

“When he came out he was running back and forth with five gallon buckets of water, just trying to get it out,” said Crawford.

Reith said that it is dangerous to take on a fire alone and warned of radiant heat, which can cause serious injuries and even death.

“We wear protective gear for that reason. Again, as obviously pointed out in the video, the one (man) didn’t have a shirt on. He only looked like he had trunks on. Neither one had shoes. In the video, that bare skin, it doesn’t take much to affect it. We just want to make sure that people understand, despite your best intentions, your safety is a bigger priority,” said Reith.

Nobody was hurt and Crawford is thankful for her neighbor’s kindness.

“That meant a lot because they were trying to save something that didn’t belong to them, that didn’t affect them at all. So, I’m very, very grateful for that,” said Crawford.

Officials warn that fires can move and grow in an unpredictable way and that’s why they ask bystanders to keep their distance, call 911 and let trained officials take it from there.

Officials do not know what sparked the fire and it is under investigation.