CONCORD (CBS SF) — A fire that ripped through a Concord warehouse late Wednesday night burned dangerously close to a propane tank and destroyed outbuildings and vehicles, fire officials said Thursday.

Fire crews responded around 11 p.m. to the one-alarm fire, which burned at an industrial building at 2250 Via De Mercados that houses a towing company and a U-Haul truck rental franchise, Contra Costa County Fire Protection District inspector George Laing said.

Crews reported seeing the fire from about a mile away as they were heading to the scene.

When they arrived, they struggled to gain access to the property and had to force open a locked gate, Laing said.

In addition to the warehouse, the fire burned two outbuildings, an adjacent travel trailer and two vehicles parked outside.

Two other vehicles inside the warehouse also burned, and the flames came close to a propane tank inside the building but it didn’t explode, Laing said.

Firefighters were able to get the blaze under control in about 20 minutes.

The fire caused an estimated $250,000 in damage, the fire inspector said.

No injuries were reported.

Investigators have not yet determined what caused the blaze, but Laing said it likely started in one of the outbuildings.

He said the fire crews’ delay in gaining entry into the property likely allowed the flames to spread.

“The more quickly we get to the fire, the smaller the fire will be and the less damage there will be,” he said.

Commercial property owners within the Contra Costa Fire Protection District with questions about fire department access to commercial buildings are advised to call (925) 941-3300.

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