Fires damage 2 East Ridge houses

Fires damage 2 East Ridge houses

January 30th, 2012 by Staff Report in News

East Ridge police say arson was the cause of a fire that broke out early Sunday at this home at the intersection of Bennett and John Ross roads in East Ridge. Photo by Kevin Hardy

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East Ridge firefighters battled two residential fires Sunday, one of which police believe was caused by arson.

East Ridge police officers noticed smoke shortly after 1 a.m. at a two-story home at 3900 Bennett Road at the intersection with John Ross Road.

Fire crews were able to contain the fire quickly, which left an estimated $10,000 in damage, said East Ridge Police Chief Eddie Phillips. Phillips said the home, which has a for sale sign on the front lawn, was vacant and unoccupied. Police have opened a criminal investigation into the blaze.

Anyone with information is asked to call East Ridge police at 622-1725 or the confidential tip line at 867-0016.

Later in the day, firefighters responded to a separate fire at 3619 Ida Belle Lane that was believed to be an accident. All the occupants had gotten out when crews arrived about 2:30 p.m. Phillips said fire crews started an "aggressive interior attack" on the fire to save as much of the home as possible.

About a third of the $130,000 home had major damage, Phillips said. The amount of damage is estimated to be at least $40,000.

Fire investigators determined that the fire was electrical in nature, though an investigation is ongoing.

The American Red Cross responded to the home to aid the residents.