Fire tears through roof of abandoned building near Midtown Garden Center

Firefighters say squatters have been known to occupy building

MIAMI – An abandoned building caught fire early Thursday in Midtown Miami.

The fire started before dawn near the intersection of Northeast Second Avenue and Northeast 26th Street, close to the Midtown Garden Center.

Flames could be seen shooting through the roof of the building.

Miami Department of Fire-Rescue Capt. Ignatius Carroll said firefighters entered the building but encountered heavy flames on the second floor, forcing them to fight the fire from the outside.

Two ladder trucks were used to help extinguish the flames.


Firefighters said the building was abandoned but not necessarily vacant, as squatters have been known to occupy it.

"We actually called police yesterday because we saw some people back there," Ninfa Diaz, owner of the Midtown Garden Center, said.

Diaz said it was a "very, very intense fire."

"I'm very grateful that it was handled as quickly as it was and it wasn't major," Diaz said. "And it didn't get my business."

No injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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