SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - A fire erupted at an auto body shop on Pacific Highway, near San Diego's Lindbergh Field, Tuesday morning, sending thick black smoke into the air that was visible for miles.
The fire was reported shortly before 8:30 a.m. at Diko Auto Repair in the 4000 block of Pacific Highway, San Diego Fire-Rescue Department officials said.
Multiple fire engines and 75 firefighters, plus a water-dropping helicopter, were summoned to battle the blaze.
SDFD Battalion Chief Jeff Mitchell said crews initially entered the building to make sure no one was inside, and once it was determined there were no people in the structure, firefighters battled the fire from the outside and from above.
The shop owner told 10News he does not know how the fire started. He said he was on his way to the shop when he saw the plumes of smoke.
A structural engineer determined the building would need to be red tagged, with no one allowed inside, until further inspection. Another check of the site will be completed this week, according to fire officials.
The damage estimate to the structure is $750,000 and damage estimate to the contents is $250,000.
The San Diego Fire Department will have two crews at the scene Tuesday and possibly a third overnight to watch for flare-ups.
— Glenn Laursen (@OGLaursen) December 19, 2017