DJ Becker/The Madera Tribune
A fast moving, wind driven fire destroyed an abandoned house along the canal in the 16300 block of Road 26 Monday afternoon. The start of the fire was suspicious according to Calfire authorities.
A fire deemed to be suspicious destroyed an older abandoned house early Monday afternoon in the 16300 block of Road 26 just north of Ellis Street according to Calfire Battalion Chief Jim Forga.
The 1,200-square-foot wood-and-stucco house was almost completely engulfed upon arrival of the fire department, according to bystanders who spotted the fire and called it in. A light wind fanned the flames.
The heavy black plume of smoke could be seen blowing over most of Madera. The property had been disked and the vegetation cleared, which helped stop the fire from spreading, Forga said.
The area adjacent to the canal has been the site of several fires razing abandoned homes in the last six months, with most of the fires being attributed by residents to the large number of homeless people camping and starting cooking, or other fires while trespassing along the canal or on private property. No injuries were reported.