A black Nissan Altima was totally gutted by fire after it was left abandoned on a side street in East Rome Friday evening, leaving the owners and authorities puzzled as to how it got there.
Rome Fire Quint 3 was initially dispatched to the area of Sunset Drive between Dean Avenue and Dodd Boulevard around 1:15 pm. Rome Police arrived first on the scene and found the car, a 90′s model Nissan Altima, fully engulfed in flames and sitting in a blocked off dirt road near the top of the hill on Sunset Drive.
Firefighters arrived a short time later and doused the flames, despite a small secondary explosion in the passenger compartment of the vehicle as they battled the fire, possibly from an aerosol can inside.
A witness who told RNW she was the one to first report the fire to 911 said that her and her father first saw a small fire inside the passenger compartment when they passed, and that by the time they had pulled over to report it, the fire had totally engulfed the car.
According to Rome Police Captain David Salmon, he could find no one in the area that claimed the car following the fire. Officers soon checked the tag and were able to make contact with the owners family, who knew nothing about how the vehicle had left its registered address on Spring Creek Street and ended up on Sunset Drive.
Rome Police were still investigating the blaze and clearing the scene at 8:00 pm, leaving Sunset Drive blocked. Police had also called Rome Police Arson Investigator Pete Sailors to the scene to assist.