Modesto Fire Department crews put out fires twice Monday at the same vacant house on the 2500 block of Tully Road.
About 3:30 p.m., five engines and a truck company were dispatched to the report of a structure fire north of Mount Vernon Drive. Crews arrived to find moderate smoke showing and two small fires fairly close together inside, at one end of the house, said Battalion Chief Randy Anderson.
The fires were quickly contained, and no one was found inside the house. Neighbors said squatters have been seen in and around the house for several days. They said a “for sale” sign was outside the home for a while, then was gone, Anderson said.
About 9:40 p.m., six engines and a truck were sent to the same address. Smoke and flames were coming from windows on the front and right side of the house, Anderson said.
Neighbors said they heard people screaming prior to the fire. After knocking down the flames in about 15 minutes from the exterior, firefighters searched the house but again found no one. The origin of the second fire was determined to be at the opposite end of the house as the first fires, Anderson said.
Damage to the house from the fires has been estimated at $100,000, he said.
Battalion chiefs and fire investigators also responded to the fires. One battalion chief was from the Ceres Fire Department.
Deke Farrow: 209-578-2327