Toledo fire crews battle blaze at vacant house on Bancroft

6/12/2013
BLADE STAFF
Toledo firefighters battle the blaze at a vacant two-story house on West Bancfroft Street at Warren Avenue.
Toledo firefighters battle the blaze at a vacant two-story house on West Bancfroft Street at Warren Avenue.

A fire that started at a vacant central Toledo house today spread to at least one neighboring home.

The fire, on West Bancfroft Street at Warren Avenue, was reported just before 1 p.m.

The burning two-story house's exact address was not available. Police crews blocked off Bancroft and parts of Warren while firefighters worked to extinguish the flames, which shot through the roof.

By about 2 p.m., the fire appeared to be fully extinguished. Its cause was not immediately known.

Princess Matthews, 47, of Toledo, said she was driving westbound on Bancroft when she saw the fire. She said she "just knew" the next-door house would catch fire, so she turned around, went to that house, and banged on a front door.

Others joined her and they shouted that there was a fire next door. Ms. Matthews said she heard children screaming inside the house, and she and another man were about to start breaking windows to free them when the oldest, who appeared to be about 11, opened the door. Four children came out; it was unclear if any adults were home.