Mirror may have sparked auto repair shop fire

Fire started shortly before 3pm Sunday at Car-Tec Automotive in the 2300 block of Blanco Road

San Antonio – A Father’s Day fire at a near North Side auto repair shop may have been caused by a mirror, one of the shop’s owners says.

The fire at Car-Tec Automotive in the 2300 block of Blanco Road, at the corner of San Francisco, started just before 3 p.m. Sunday.

Gamaliel Flores, who co-owns the business with his brother Bernabe Flores, said the fire damage was concentrated in the back of the shop, where they do a lot of repairs, though there was also heat and smoke damage up in the front.

SAFD: Several cars engulfed in flames in North Side auto repair shop fire

Flores said the blaze damaged his brother’s car and three customer cars -- two of which were totaled.

The business had been remodeling, he told KSAT, and had left a “pretty good sized” mirror out back. Flores says a San Antonio Fire Department arson investigator told him that caused the fire.

“It’s like a magnifying glass, is what he was telling me,” he said.

An SAFD spokesman on Tuesday confirmed that the “cause has been linked to several mirrors in the area reflecting sunlight onto a flammable source.”

At least 17 units responded to the fire. Flores said firefighters told him they had already been cruising around when they got the call, so they were there “pretty fast.”

“Other than that, it probably would have engulfed the whole property, you know,” Flores said, praising their response.

Despite the smoky interior of the shop and charred back area, Flores is optimistic that they will get the business back up and running. He’s also vocal in thanking his faith.

“The Bible says that what the enemy intends were bad, God will use it for good. And also, hey, there’s no catastrophes, you know? Nobody got hurt. You know, it’s just materialistic stuff that, you know, of course, it -- you know, it hits where it hurts, you know? But it’s OK. You know, we’re going to come back,” he said.

Flores said family has already been working on cleaning the mess, and they’ll see what happens with their insurance.

About the Authors:

Garrett Brnger is a reporter with KSAT 12.

William Caldera has been at KSAT since 2003. He covers a wide range of stories including breaking news, weather, general assignments and sports.