Couple, pets escape fire at Glendale condo


Video report by Tess Rafols

Posted on May 28, 2014 at 8:17 AM

Updated Friday, May 30 at 2:24 PM

Map: 45th Avenue and Maryland

View larger map

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Flames gutted a pair of vehicles in the carport of a Glendale condo Wednesday morning.

It happened just after 1 a.m. in the area of 45th and Maryland avenues.

While one unit was badly damaged, a brick firewall prevented the huge, fast-moving flames from spreading.

A neighbor heard loud bangs and hit record on his cell phone as the flames shot into the air before firefighters arrived on the scene.

Heriberto Contreras, the man who lives in the unit that caught fire, said he woke up to the sound of breaking glass. As soon as he saw the fire he woke his wife and they escaped with their pets through a back door. He said they had to jump over a wall to get to a safe place.

"You feel helpless because there's nothing you can do," Contreras said.

Firefighters quickly got control of the fire.

The fire damaged a couple of rooms and destroyed the carport and everything in it, including two vehicles.

Investigators are not sure what sparked the fire, but they believe it started in the carport, possibly in one of the vehicles.