NORMAN — A tire store fire sent plumes of smoke high into the air Sunday that was visible for many miles.
The fire started about 5:45 p.m. at the Hibdon Tires Plus, 221 N Interstate Drive, which is near Interstate 35 and Main Street, Norman Fire Chief Jim Bailey said.
No injuries were reported, and the cause of the fire has not been determined.
When firefighters arrived, there was smoke and fire coming through the roof of the building. The second floor is used as a storage area for tires, Bailey said, and it took crews about an hour to extinguish the fire.
Christy Watson and her family were just finishing their meal at the nearby Golden Corral restaurant. She said people started leaving their tables and flocking to the windows. Smoke was coming from the south end second floor of the tire store across the parking lot.
“I saw what looked like workers going in and out of the building carrying what looked like tools,” Watson said.
Luke Vann and Richard Lusk were two of the people she saw.
“We were at the mall and thought we saw smoke coming from a construction tractor on the highway,” said Lusk.
“We came over the Main Street bridge and pulled in to help,” said Vann.
They ended up helping mechanics save some tools and carry water to firemen before police halted them. Fire hoses on all exits prohibited them from leaving as the fire consumed first the second floor tire storage and then the rest of the building.
Traffic on I-35 kept flowing, but Interstate Drive north of Main was shut down by smoke and emergency vehicles.
A damage estimate was not available Sunday.
Contributing: Steve Sisney, Staff Writer