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Belmont Cragin Warehouse Destroyed By Massive Fire

By Erica Demarest | January 3, 2014 10:01am | Updated on January 3, 2014 12:57pm
 Firefighters responded to a three-alarm fire in a single-story Belmont Cragin warehouse Friday morning.
Belmont Cragin Warehouse Fire
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CHICAGO — A three-alarm fire gutted a single-story Belmont Cragin warehouse Friday morning.

At least a dozen trucks responded to the fire at 1945 N. Latrobe Ave., which started before 9:30 a.m.

By Friday afternoon, the flames were quelled, but not without making an impression on area residents.

Gabriela Salinas was running to a Family Dollar, 5222 W. Grand Ave., right across the street from the warehouse when she turned a corner and saw the flames.

"It was crazy," Salinas said. "There was a lot of explosions. They said there were tanks of gas inside."

The building had propane tanks inside, according to the Fire Department.

Salinas took video on her phone of giant plumes of smoke and said she saw firefighters on ladders fighting flames that shot up well above the building's roof.

Neighborhood resident Jesse Figueroa said he ran to the scene when he heard helicopters overhead. He said the building was a warehouse where bricklayers and plumbers often go to stock up on supplies.

"There's a lot of propane and gas and acids in the back," said Figueroa, adding that he worried about the warehouse workers who likely no longer have jobs.

"We do a lot of shopping here. It's gone," he said.