Burlington fire that displaced three is ‘considered suspicious,’ officials say

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BURLINGTON, Iowa — A fire that started at a house in the east-central part of the city “is considered suspicious,” according to the city’s fire marshal.

The fire in the 300 block of Spring Street was reported by a neighbor who said they saw smoke, according to a statement from Fire Marshal Mark Crooks. It was reported around 4 p.m. Wednesday, December 21, 2016.

Within two minutes firefighters arrived at the house, which was broken up into three apartment units, Crooks said.  They found smoke coming from the eaves and vents of the house.

Crooks said that firefighters found the fire in the kitchen of the second floor apartment. Though the fire was contained to that kitchen, the rest of the apartment sustained head and smoke damage.  The other two apartment units had some smoke and water damage.  Only one apartment unit had a working smoke detector.

Overall the house sustained about $7,000 worth of damages. There were about $3,000 worth of contents damaged. Crooks said the property is insured.

Nobody was home at the time of the fire and there were no reported injuries, Crooks said.

The Red Cross was called to help three displaced residents.

Investigators have been looking into what caused the fire. The Burlington fire and police departments are involved in the investigation, which “is considered suspicious,” read Crooks’ statement.

There were more than a dozen firefighters that helped battle the fire.  Crews were on scene until 8:40 p.m.