Two people and a firefighter were sent to the hospital after fire destroyed a home in the Brookside Glen neighborhood Saturday afternoon on Hollybrook Lane.
Investigators were still looking into the cause of the fire, which was reported as starting in the garage, said Tinley Park Fire Chief Ken Dunn. The fire chief did not know the extent of the injuries to the three people sent to area hospitals and would not release their names.
The fire started around 2 p.m., burning through about half of the home, the garage and three cars--a BMW, Corvette and Audi--at 8511 Hollybrook Lane. There also was considerable heat and smoke damage to the entire house, Dunn said. Thick, black smoke poured into the sky and could be seen for miles. Witnesses said flames were shooting through the roof of the house before fire crews arrived.
By 3 p.m., had put out the blaze. Police blocked off about a 10-house stretch of Hollybrook, and 10 fire engines from Tinley Park, Orland, Mokena, Frankfort, Homewood and Matteson lined the neighborhood streets. Several ambulances responded, too, as the temperature reached 93 degrees at about 3 p.m.
"The heat was so intense. ... It felt like I was standing on the sun, it was so hot," said neighbor Larry Harrison, who could feel the flames' intensity from his home across the street.
Harrison said he was in his backyard pool when he smelled something burning, then noticed the smoke coming from the Hollybrook house. He immediately called 911.
"You could hear the tires (on the cars) popping; it was like firecrackers," he said, adding that the house's owner tried put out the flames consuming the Corvette in the driveway with a garden house.
"He was trying to douse the 'Vette," said another neighbor who did not wish to be named. "We were all screaming at him to get away from the fire."
Tinley Mayor Ed Zabrocki was on the scene talking with firefighters as they cooled down with water from a neighbor's garden hose. In fact, the heat of the blaze, combined with outdoor temperatures in the low 90s, had fire crews making sure they were staying hydrated and managing heat stress as best they could, Dunn said.
"Sometimes you got to do your job, and you can't rotate crews in and out to rest or get water," he added.