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Arson suspected in latest structure fires

Fire inspector Sam Harris said that two structure fires Thursday morning in East Albany were caused by arson. The fires were detected at almost the same time and within a block from each other. Flammable material had been applied to the exterior of both structures, Harris said. (Jim West)

Fire inspector Sam Harris said that two structure fires Thursday morning in East Albany were caused by arson. The fires were detected at almost the same time and within a block from each other. Flammable material had been applied to the exterior of both structures, Harris said. (Jim West)

ALBANY — Another round of suspicious structure fires occurred Thursday in East Albany — just around the corner from each other.

Units of the Albany Fire Department responded around 6 a.m. Thursday to a blaze on the 1300 block of East Society Avenue. According to Assistant Fire Chief Rubin Jordon, firefighters were met with flames and heavy smoke coming from the roof at the back side of the building.

Progress was being made in controlling that blaze when firefighters received a dispatch to another fire, Jordan said.

The second fire was right around the corner from the first — on the 1300 block of Second Avenue, Jordon said. The roof of the Second Avenue structure also was burning.

Both former residencies were vacant and had been boarded up, officials say. A later look at the structures by Fire Investigator Sam Harris showed that incendiary material had been applied to the outside of each of the buildings.

Harris said that anyone with information about these or other fires should call Crime Stoppers at (229) 436-TIPS.