Thick black smoke poured across the Eastex Freeway on Wednesday morning after an abandoned motel caught fire for the second time in less than two weeks. According to the Houston Fire Department, the blaze at the vacant motel — located at 9300 Eastex Freeway — was reported just after 8 a.m.
Freeway traffic in both directions at Tidwell slowed to a crawl due to the heavy smoke, KHOU Channel 11 reports. Two northbound freeway lanes, as well as northbound frontage road lanes, were closed entirely until the fire was declared under control by HFD at 9:21 a.m.
Arson investigators are looking into the cause of both the Wednesday morning blaze and initial fire on Dec. 30. The building was heavily damaged in the latest fire, officials report.
No injuries have been reported.