HOPE HULL, AL (WSFA) - It was just before sunset and huge plumes of black smoke and orange flames filled the sky in Hope Hull Tuesday evening.
Emmitt Pitts watched as his garage, filled with several impressive automobiles, became fully engulfed in flames; flames that were moving closer and closer to his home.
Now, a day later we're learning more about what might have started the blaze.
"...We heard some bang, bangs...and we thought it was the grandchildren slamming doors..." Pitts said thinking back.
Pitts' grandson spotted the flames coming from the garage area and called for his grandfather.
"I looked into the first garage door...and the 2008 [Chevy] Impala, and under the front of the hood was smoke boiling out from under it."
Together Pitts and his grandson tried to pull the burning automobile out of the garage, but when flames spread to the backseat Pitts feared the gas tanks could explode. He backed off.
Pitts has an impressive automobile collection in his garage and was able to save a few of them, but he couldn't keep the flames from spreading to the house. Among other damage, he says the roof has collapsed in the area of his home designated as a play area.
A 2008 Chevy Impala, a fully restored 1978 Cadillac and a Model T Ford were totally destroyed in the blaze.
Thankfully, everyone was able to make it out of the home safely and the victims are now staying with family members while they try to determine if the house is repairable.