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4-Alarm Fire Engulfs San Jose Auto Parts Store

SAN JOSE (CBS SF) -- Firefighters extinguished a four-alarm fire that started in vegetation and spread to an auto parts store in San Jose Wednesday afternoon, a fire captain said.

The fire was reported at 1:27 p.m. in grass and shrubs behind the O'Reilly Auto Parts store at 1064 S. White Road and had spread to the eaves of the store itself as firefighters arrived, San Jose Fire Capt. Christopher Salcido said.

"There are small bushes, light vegetation back there, so that's where the initial start was," said Salcido.

The blaze initially prompted a three-alarm response by arriving firefighters but a fourth alarm was quickly called because of the risk posed by potential hazardous materials like oil and other automobile fluids inside the store, Salcido said.

"Oils and antifreeze -- all of these potentially caustic and toxic materials that are in there," said Salcido. "We want to make sure that when have enough people and equipment to prevent this situation from becoming much, much worse."

The fire department would eventually call in more than 75 firefighters and nearly two dozen fire engines and trucks.

Fire crews eventually extinguished the fire as of 2:22 p.m., he said.

Everyone inside the auto parts store had gotten out safely by the time firefighters arrived and no fire crews were injured while battling the blaze, Salcido said.

A vehicle also caught fire less than 40 feet from the store but Salcido said he didn't know if the car fire was somehow related to the larger blaze.

But the fire department says with temperatures rising into the triple digits, the risk is only going up.

"It's only going to get hotter," said Salcido. "It's only going to get drier. And as it does, the vegetation is going to be more prone to catch fire."

Crews remained at the scene as of shortly after 3 p.m. to look for any hot spots.

TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News Service contributed to this report.

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