Gary firefighters battle abandoned building blaze

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Post Tribune – GARY –

“Gary firefighters are investigating a suspicious fire that gutted an abandoned building Wednesday afternoon in the Glen Park neighborhood.

The fire broke out shortly before 4:20 p.m. at the two-story, red building at 4395 Broadway. Smoke from the fire was visible from Merrillville and the building was fully engulfed, with flames were pouring out of the windows and doors when firefighters arrived.

No injuries were reported.

Four engines battled the blaze more than an hour. Capt. Erik McDaniels said they were doing “surround and drown” to ensure it didn’t spread to the nearby houses.

Fire investigator Mark Cohill said they aren’t sure how the fire started, but they assume it was suspicious because the building had been abandoned for years. Cohill said this wasn’t the first fire they had responded to at that address. A resident, who didn’t wish to be named, said the downstairs apartment had caught on fire when it was still occupied.

The building used to house a bar called Capari Lounge — named after the former owner’s hometown in Macedonia — and two apartments, but the bar closed about 10 years ago and the apartments were vacated more recently, according to area residents.”

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