BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Investigators are looking into what caused nearly a dozen suspicious fires at vacant buildings in southwest Baltimore in a 24-hour period beginning Sunday night.

The first fire broke out around 11 p.m. Sunday night in the 2000 block of West Pratt Street; several others burned Monday evening, Baltimore City Fire Chief Roman Clark said.

At one point, firefighters were called to six different fires within an hour and a half.

Chief Clark said his department is now calling in additional investigators to see if there are any similarities between the 11 fires and whether or not they were intentionally set.

He said he cannot say definitively whether or not arson was involved, but said it certainly looks like that could be the case.

Credit: Jason Barber

As of Monday night, there have been a total of 11 fires:

  1. 2026 West Pratt St
  2. 1928 Wilhelm St.
  3. Wilhelm St and Payson St.
  4. 1804 McHenry St
  5. 1900 Ramsay St
  6. 2114 Wilhelm St
  7. South Calhoun St and McHenry St
  8. 1400 McHenry St
  9. 299 S. Pulaski St
  10. 2005 McHenry St
  11. 200 Eagle St

Clark said his department has deployed 10 fire trucks and 32 firefighters to try to get the fires under control.

“This is a very dangerous situation. Our firefighters are going inside these vacant buildings and putting their lives on the line to try to extinguish these fires so that they don’t spread to other homes that are occupied and things of that nature,” he said.

Southwest Baltimore resident Curtis Williams remembered the family who used to live in the vacant home that burned on South Calhoun and McHenry streets. As a kid, he lived just one street over.

“It’s just a shame to watch the place that you grew up all your life turn to ruins, it’s like a battlefield out here,” he said.

Fortunately, no injuries have been reported in any of the fires. Firefighters have been able to contain the fires so that they didn’t spread to any other homes.

Rachel Menitoff


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