Wednesday morning, Cleveland firefighters spent hours protecting other businesses from a nearby fire in a vacant building.

It happened at the Griffith Kawasaki building.

Some of the business owners hope the fire relieves the homeless problem in that area.

The sun was not up yet, but fire crews could see flames coming out of the roof of an abandoned building a few blocks away from the fire station.

Jeff Stansberry owns Jeff's Auto Transport next to the burning building.

He's been in his building since '92 and says that vacant building has caused some issues.

“It doesn't look like there's much left to this time,” said Jeff Stansberry. “So maybe that will put an end to the homeless living in there.”

Stansberry says there have been three fires in the Griffth Kawasaki building.

Deputy Fire Chief Pete VanDusen recalls one from august of last year.

“We didn't have a suspicion that it was a set fire,” said Pete VanDusen. “I think we thought it was possibly caused by the homeless trying to cook.”

VanDusen says given the history of damage to this building, they had to come up with a specific plan of attack.

“So we knew we weren't going to make a very aggressive attack on the fire,” said Pete VanDusen. “We are going to do what is a defensive attack to protect the area around it.”

Stansberry's business was one of the buildings firefighters were trying to save.

He says every time that building is on fire, his business is in jeopardy.

“It has gotten smoke damage and a little bit of water damage,” said Jeff Stansberry. “Of course you have to call people and get them to come out and things like that. Fortunately, it hasn't been any serious damage to my building.”

Right now, it’s not clear what insurance will cover to the nearby businesses.