Port Arthur Fire Department responds to second likely arson in last couple of weeks

Published 12:45 pm Tuesday, June 6, 2023

For the second time in less than one month, a house tagged for demolition has been destroyed by fire.

According to information from Port Arthur Fire Chief Greg Benson, a residence in the 2600 block of 62nd Street at the corner of Garnet Avenue was reported engulfed in flames to the fire department at 11:40 p.m. Monday.

The caller told dispatchers they had seen someone potentially start the fire.

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The house was vacant and “red tagged.”

“It may have been in the queue to get torn down,” Benson said. “I don’t know the specifics as to why that was, but it was listed as a vacant building.”

There were no reported injuries.

“It is an active investigation that, leaning towards the initial indication, was arson-related,” Benson said. “But the investigation has to continue to identify a person.”

In late May, firefighters spent approximately three hours working to contain a fire in the 1200 block of 5th Street. The two-story structure, which had also been condemned, was destroyed by the fire.

That case remains under investigation. The building was without utilities, ruling an electrical issue out as a potential cause.

Officials have not said the two fires are related.