Chadstone Shopping Centre is in lockdown as firefighters battle a blaze in one of its carparks. Picture Andrew Tauber
Chadstone Shopping Centre is in lockdown as firefighters battle a blaze in one of its carparks. Picture Andrew Tauber

Cars burst into flames amid Christmas rush

SHOPPERS have been evacuated and a car park closed after a car burst into flames amid the Christmas shopping rush.

Flames engulfed cars outside the busy complex, with firefighters working to extinguish the blaze, which has spread to three cars.

The car park has been evacuated and thick smoke is blanketing the area, with the MFB calling for the public to keep clear.

A car is on fire in the Chadstone car park. Facebook: MoyraDom Pinto
A car is on fire in the Chadstone car park. Facebook: MoyraDom Pinto
Thick smoke in the Chadstone area after the incident.
Thick smoke in the Chadstone area after the incident.

Police confirmed the fire has been "deemed non-suspicious".

Police have closed one entrance to the shopping centre from Dandenong Road.

The closure has caused delays for traffic on Dandenong Road, Belgrave Road and Chadstone Road. People are urged to take Warrigal Road instead.

There are more than 12 fire crews on the scene, with firefighters called just before 1.40pm.

Eyewitnesses posted video of a car on fire in an undercover car park, showing a large amount of smoke and flames.

A witness told the Herald Sun she saw big plumes of smoke in the distance.

Smoke blankets the carpark entrance at Chadstone. Picture: Twitter/@!ashhendel
Smoke blankets the carpark entrance at Chadstone. Picture: Twitter/@!ashhendel

"There were Chadstone security or staff members directing traffic to prevent people from parking in the car park. There was a heavy police presence and fire trucks on the scene," she said.

"Chadstone Rd is blocked off, or was blocked off, near the McDonald's.

"The smoke was quite thick when you're at the roundabout near Capital Kitchen … If you're looking out at the car park, the smoke was so thick you couldn't see through it."

"It looked like it was just foggy, that's how thick it was."

"There were lots of people outside the shopping centre, shoppers, people who were waiting for the Chadstone bus. They were all evacuated."

Chadstone Shopping Centre told the Herald Sun the car park was being evacuated and no one else was being allowed into the shopping centre. Those inside were also not able to leave.

There are no reports of injuries, but paramedics are on standby.

Chadstone Shopping Centre is in lockdown as firefighters battle a blaze in one of its carparks. Picture Andrew Tauber
Chadstone Shopping Centre is in lockdown as firefighters battle a blaze in one of its carparks. Picture Andrew Tauber