Sissonville Vacant House Fire Investigated as Suspicious

SISSONVILLE, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A home vacant for just two weeks catches fire in Sissonville.

It happened early Sunday morning on Rich Creek Road. Rick Colvard lives just across the street and says, "the flames were shooting up 30-40 feet high, maybe even higher. It melted the siding on the house behind me. That's how hot it was 150 foot away."

Neighbors called 911 Sunday after first seeing the flames, but they also called at least two times after the fire department left. Colvard says he thinks the fire department left too soon. There were still flames and heavy smoke coming from the home seven hours after firefighters arrived. He says, "there's a whole lot of children in the neighborhood and there's no caution tape, no nothing. They just left it burning with no one here."

Emergency officials say it's not uncommon to leave a vacant home burning. It's less dangerous than trying to fight the flames and saves taxpayers money from the county having to tear down the structure later on. Kanawha County Emergency Manager, CW Sigman, says, "they will try to make it as safe as possible before they leave, but once they leave, it's not their scene anymore. It goes back to the homeowner."

The fire is being considered suspicious and arson is a likely cause.

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