Massive warehouse fire shuts down part of Dearborn for hours

More than 40 firefighters work to contain fire

DEARBORN, Mich. – A massive warehouse fire that started late Christmas night shut down the area of Chase Road and Warren Avenue in Dearborn for hours.

More than 40 firefighters worked around the clock to contain the fire, officials said. The 40,000-square-foot warehouse stores many of the everyday items found at a gas station called Chase Cash and Carry. The business employs about 25 people.

Dearborn firefighters began battling the flames at 10 p.m. Wednesday. Chase Road was closed at Warren Avenue for hours as crews tried to contain the flare-ups.

“Big, big flames,” warehouse worker Tareg Bitar said. “It looked like it went all the way back by the train tracks.”

A Dearborn warehouse fire that started on Christmas Day 2019. (WDIV)
A Dearborn warehouse fire that started on Christmas Day 2019. (WDIV)

“Very challenging,” Dearborn fire Chief Joseph Murray said. “Long hours, all that water, pulling the hose. It’s a lot of work for the firefighters. The crews last night did a great job and we were able to relieve them this morning with oncoming shift, but they’re going to be here for a number of hours, as well.”

As firefighters dumped water on the warehouse, nearby residential streets flooded. Public work crews said catch basins were clogged with leaf debris. Streets were cleared early Thursday morning.

“That was weird -- the water and the traffic,” Bitar said. “It was crazy. It was very crazy.”

After working overnight, firefighters said they expect to remain at the scene for most of the day Thursday.

“Our crews did a really great job,” Murray said. “I’m really proud of our men and women that were out here all night long and this morning, continuing to put this fire out. A lot of hard work by a lot of people.”

The cause of the fire has yet to be determined.

Dearborn police said a drone with the Michigan State Police Arson Unit might be brought in to help with the investigation.

Here are some videos from the city of Dearborn’s Instagram page:

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