House Fire Deemed Suspicious

ALSIP, Ill. (STMW) — An early morning fire in an unoccupied home in south suburban Alsip has been deemed suspicious by fire officials.

The fire in the 11800 block of Joalyce Drive on Wednesday was “definitely suspicious,” Alsip Fire Chief Charles Geraci said, noting the fire originated in more than one place in the home.

No firefighters were injured in the 3 a.m. blaze, but it spread so fast at one point firefighters were called out of the house to prevent injuries, Geraci said.

“It spread quickly, starting low in the home, in the basement, and shot through the roof. As quickly as it moved and appearing to come from more than one location, there’s some red flags there,” Geraci said. “Thank God we didn’t have any firemen injured.”

The home has a “for sale” sign in the front yard, he said. Investigators are working to find the home owner to determine whether the home was in foreclosure, he said.

Investigators with the state fire marshal’s office were due to investigate Wednesday afternoon, he said.

Geraci said he’s aware of some areas having problems with fires in foreclosed homes “but I can’t say we’ve run into that here.”

Firefighters from 12 Southland fire departments helped put out the fire, which was doused by 4 a.m.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Alsip fire department at (708) 385-6902 Ext. 233.

© Sun-Times Media Wire Chicago Sun-Times 2011. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed

  • Mrs. O'leary

    12 fire departments? What will they do if a real fire breaks out…

  • red

    The firemen all did a fantastic job containing the fire. With small children living on either side of the fire, I ask you, what is the appropriate number of response units/departments to a house fire. Had there not been enough coverage there, you would be asking why there were not more departments present? And with flames shooting 7 to 10 feet out of the roof, I ask you Mrs. O’leary, what constitures a “real fire”?

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