Car fire in Irvine parking garage causes $15,000 in damage


A car fire in an Irvine parking structure totaled an older-model Lexus, damaged two other cars and covered about 15 vehicles in soot Friday morning.

A mechanical malfunction sparked the fire in the Lexus, which was parked on the third floor of an office building garage at 3 Park Plaza, said Orange County Fire Authority Capt. Steve Concialdi.

No one was in the car, which had been parked there for less than an hour when the flames started at about 8:40 a.m., Concialdi said.

Passersby tried to put out the blaze with extinguishers, but “a car fire gets too intense, and fire extinguishers are only effective on smaller fires when they first start,” Concialdi said. “This fire was well-established, and the extinguishers were ineffective.”

About 20 firefighters arrived at the scene and put out the flames before 9 a.m., according to the Fire Authority. Nobody was injured.

“Fortunately the first engine was on a medical aid [call] right there in the same complex, and they were able to quickly drive over there,” Concialdi said.

The fire caused about $15,000 in damage, according to the fire agency.

Concialdi said the Irvine Co., which owns the property, offered to pick up the cost of detailing vehicles that were covered by the smoke residue.

— Jeremiah Dobruck

Twitter: @jeremiahdobruck