Vacant house fire rekindles hours after initial investigation

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DAYTON (WDTN) – The Dayton Fire Marshal has confirmed that a vacant house fire rekindled Monday morning.

Initial crews arrived in the 2700 block of E. Fourth Street in Dayton just before 5 a.m.

Officials couldn’t say whether or not the fire is considered arson, or accidental. District Chief Barry Baldwin tells 2NEWS squatters might have been inside the home at the time the fire started.

“They had found a little entrance and they were going back and forth using this from time to time,” he said.

Neighbors believe the fire started on a couch that was sitting on the front porch. 2NEWS spoke with several neighbors who had tried to have the City of Dayton remove the couch, and board up more windows; however, the neighbors say the city didn’t respond.

Debbie Kerce, a neighbor, says she made sure a family living next door was up and out of the home before the fire really got going.

“They’ve got a little boy over there. It’s right close to them,” she said.

A family of three, including a little boy, live next door. A neighbor pounded on their door to make sure they were able to get out safely. They were not displaced.

Neighbors say the fire peeled back the vinyl siding — revealing another threat: asbestos.

Officials tell us the fire is either arson, or accidentally set.

The fire rekindled at around 10:30 a.m. Crews went back to the scene — and found smoke, but no visible flames. Officials say the rekindle happened in the attic.

We’ll have more information when it becomes available.

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