Fire at abandoned Sonic deliberately set, district chief says

SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) – A fire that gutted an abandoned building at a former Sonic Drive-In on the city’s Northeast Side  was deliberately set.

District Fire Chief Michael Garcia told KTSA News a door was open and there were flames inside when the first crews arrived around 3:30 Wednesday morning on Rittiman Road near IH 35.

“We’re not sure if they did it to keep warm or they meant to do damage.  We just know someone started a fire inside,” Garcia said.

Crews managed to contain the fire to the building and keep it from spreading to the awnings, but there were some tense moments.

“Because of the air handling units on the roof and the fire inside, the roof started caving and we pulled everybody out,” said Garcia.

Damage to the wooden structure is estimated at $100,000. San Antonio’s code compliance department will inspect what’s left of the building and determine whether it should be demolished.

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