VALLEY VILLAGE (CBSLA) — Firefighters responded to a Valley Village apartment complex Saturday where four vehicles were burning inside a carport.
The fires were reported just before 1 p.m. Saturday in the 12700 block of Burbank Boulevard.
KCAL9/CBS2’s Jeff Nguyen reported from the scene.
Investigators said the fire was suspicious but stopped short of saying if it was related to a series of arson incidents to hit the North Hollywood area the past week.
The fire was knocked down in about 20 minutes.
On Saturday night a clean-up crew cleared away water that was contaminated with gasoline that leaked from the cars.
The smoke was so heavy it blackened all three floors above the parking spots.
The fire sent people out of their homes. Some had to get out using a walker.
Anna Quirino-Miranda owns a unit in the building.
She went to check on her tenant after she learned about what happened.
“I I just really feel bad for these people. I know some of them,” Quirino-Miranda said.
People in the condo didn’t want to be interviewed.
But neighbor Lisa Firestone said she was in shock.
“I would like to know how it happened. What happened? It’s just hard to come home and see this.” Firestone said.
One of the burned vehicles belonged to Rose Marie Lopez.
“I’m so sad. I love my car. I’m so sad that this happened here,” said Lopez.
This comes after a security camera captured a woman on a bicycle pulling up to a truck early Thursday morning.
She tried to set the gas tank on fire but the flames quickly died.
In a weird coincidence – a woman – wearing what appeared to be the same clothes and riding the same bike — came up to the KCAL9/CBS2 news crew Friday night.
But she took off on her bike as soon as KCAL9/CBS2’s Peter Daut tried to ask her questions.
That same morning four other fires were deliberately set in the same area of North Hollywood.
A number of cars and trees were burned but no one was hurt.
The fire department now believes they may be connected to the woman on the bike.
Back at the condo in Valley Village, Lopez says she wasn’t home when the fire burned her car, which she says is filled with a lot of memories.
“I carry a lot of stuff, like tools,” Lopez said. “Well, I have a lot of CDs. I hope they’re still good. I don’t know.”