SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Arson is suspected in a vacant home fire in Sacramento early Thursday morning.

The home on 4149 Whitney Avenue in the Arden-Arcade area caught fire just before 4 a.m. and was fully engulfed when neighbors got word of the threat to their homes.

When firefighters arrived on scene, the home was fully involved.

“Big flames just came out the roof from no where, just like boom,” neighbor Courtney Harris said.

Firefighters suspect arson because the house has been abandoned for months.

“We believe it was intentionally set,” Sacramento Metro Fire Battalion Chief Steve Turner said.

It started somewhere inside the garage, and it was unsettling for Harris.

“It was pretty frightening,” he said. “Couldn’t see anything at first because it was all black smoke.”

Harris was out riding his bike when he saw the fire. He then took matters into in own hands.

“I was trying to get people up around the house, next-door neighbors,” he said.

“I was half asleep and somebody’s knocking on my door said ‘The house next door is on fire,'” Mike Jessen said. “Came out and I see the big flames.”

He, too, said the fire is suspicious.

“We’d like to know [the cause]. There’s no heating or electricity, so I don’t know how it started unless somebody was living in there,” he said.

Firefighters got on scene very quickly and were able to extinguish the fire before it spread to any of the neighboring houses.


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