Fire Claims Old Detroit Packard Plant

DETROIT --

Firefighters say a fire at the long-closed Packard Motor Car Company plant on Detroit's East Side had burned itself out Saturday morning.

The fire broke out Friday night on the top floor of building near Interstate 94 and Mt. Elliott. The upper floor was fully engulfed when firefighters arrived. Fire investigators say old tires and plastic fueled the flames.

Firefighters couldn't get close enough to battle the flames because the grounds around the 48-acre sprawling complex were too unstable for their trucks. Instead, crews decided to let the fire burn itself out.

Local officials had warned nearby residents in the Grosse Pointe area to stay indoors, as they feared smoke filled with toxins could blow toward their neighborhoods.

Fire investigators believe the fire was arson.

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