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Blaze destroys vacant Balwyn house

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24 May 2014
Fire crews have battled a suspicious blaze which destroyed a Balwyn home.

The fire, which occured on on Saturday 24 May just before 7am, involved a single-storey solid brick residence that had been vacant for some time.

Upon the arrival of MFB crews, the fire was already through the roof and the small 12 sq. (108 m2) dwelling was well-alight from front to back.

A neighbouring property came under threat but firefighters managed to prevent the blaze spreading further.  An early internal attack was not possible as large sections of the roof were collapsing leaving several roof gables unstable.

Though reportedly unoccupied, concerns were raised when an iron bedhead was spotted through a window.  The remainder of the bed had already been consumed by the fire.  Later, when it was deemed safe, a search was conducted but nothing further was found.

Due to the age of the building, special asbestos procedures were implemented and a council building surveyor was requested to attend for a make-safe order to be placed on the premises.

Fire investigators and a police forensic chemist attended and confirmed the cause to be of a suspicious nature. 

The value of the dwelling was estimated at between $150,000 and $200,000 and is a complete loss as the remaining structure will need to be demolished.

The blaze took just under half an hour to bring under control.



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