Cause of fire in East Chicago under investigation

2014-01-15T20:45:00Z 2014-01-15T23:07:11Z Cause of fire in East Chicago under investigationMatt Mikus, (219) 933-3241
January 15, 2014 8:45 pm  • 

EAST CHICAGO | The cause of a Tuesday night fire that damaged two buildings in the 5000 block of Tod Avenue remains under investigation.

The fire started about 8 p.m. in a first floor bedroom of the four-unit apartment building at 5031 Tod Ave., said Henry Ventura, East Chicago fire chief inspector. The fire jumped to the house next door at 5029 Tod Ave. The fire was extinguished by 9 p.m.

Residents and the family in the house next door were able to get out of the house, and no injuries were reported.

Ventura said it was still unclear Wednesday what sparked the fire. He said the tenant of the apartment where the fire started was not home Tuesday night.

East Chicago Fire Department Inspector Capt. Steve Wielgos said it will take a few days to confirm the source.

The department did not advise the family at 5029 Tod Ave. to vacate the premises. Ventura said the fire damaged a side window, but the fire did not cause damage to the home's interior. 

Ventura said Red Cross workers helped 9 tenants Tuesday night. A 10th tenant was out of town when the fire started. He said it was unclear when residents would be able to return to their apartments.

Times staff writer Elvia Malagon contributed to this report.

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