Garage fire damages two homes

AMHERST, N.Y. (WIVB) – Fast-moving fire damaged two homes in Williamsville, and strong winds made it containing these flames a challenge for firefighters.

Dave Fancher was taking his garbage out late Friday morning when he noticed smoke coming from his neighbor’s garage on Berkley Road near Main Street and Transit in Williamsville.

“Smoke was billowing out, we ran over and knocked on the door and no one was home, so luckily that,” Fancher said.

Within minutes, flames could be seen shooting out of the garage.

All of a sudden we looked over and the house is rolling pretty good. So we called 911 right away,” said Dave Rowe.

Firefighters were able to save a dog from the home next door before the two-alarm blaze started spreading. It didn’t take long before the fire that began in 300 Berkley Road spread to the home at 308 Berkley Road.

Main-Transit Fir Department Chief Jim Lawida said, “The wind is definitely coming bad. The direction that it’s blowing is going right through the house, so that’s the first concern after an initial primary search to find that no one is home is to stop that fire from getting pushed to the rest of the house.”

The fire chief doesn’t believe either home is a total loss, and no one was home in either when flames broke out. But those who watched the fire spread are still in shock at how much damage was done in such a short period of time.

“I was outside anyhow and so I probably would have seen it but it was kind of like wow,” Fancher said.

Contractors working at a home nearby said they heard a loud bang before the fire started. But at this point, investigators have not identified the cause of the fire.

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