The Delaware Office of the State Fire Marshal is investigating house fires in the Odessa, Smyrna and Rehoboth areas.
This week, the Fire Marshal’s office determined that the fire that heavily damaged a house being constructed in Smyrna on Thursday, April 20, was arson.
The Citizens’ Hose Company was dispatched to the 100 block of Smyrna Landing Road just before midnight. A dwelling was fully involved in a fire with flames shooting from the roof. There were no reported injuries. Damage was estimated at $200,000. Deputy fire marshals ruled a person or persons intentionally started this fire.
At this point, there are no indications that this arson is related to a similar fire that occurred on April 13 on East Mount Vernon Street, Smyrna.
Anyone with information, including video footage, is asked to contact Delaware Crime Stoppers at (800) TIP-3333 or email investigators directly at Fire.Marshal@delaware.gov.
The Fire Marshal’s office is also probing a wind-driven fire earlier this month to the north in Odessa.
The fire was reported shortly before 4 a.m. in the Cantwell Ridge neighborhood’s 600 block of Corbit Drive. The Odessa Fire Company arrived at the scene with flames engulfing a two-story house. Several neighboring fire companies assisted.
The fire damaged five houses. Sixteen people were displaced. Damage is estimated to exceed $1 million. There were no reported injuries. The American Red Cross assisted with emergency aid.
The fire remains under investigation, and no cause has been determined.
The Fire Marshal’s office is also investigating a fire Saturday in the Rehoboth Beach area that caused $750,000 in damage.
The blaze, reported shortly after 1 a.m., occurred in the unit block of Corofin Lane in the Kinsale Glen development.
State fire investigators went to the scene and are currently working to determine cause of this fire. Damage is estimated at $750,000.
The fires are expected to lead to more calls for governmental units to require sprinkler systems in new homes.
That mandate is already in place in neighboring Maryland, Homebuilders have opposed the requiremnt, claiming it will make more homes unaffordable. With the average price of homes moving into the half a million dollar range, backers say the effects on mortgages and prices would be negligable, with lower insurance costs offsetting the impact.