Suspicious Fire Takes Over Melbourne Property
Twenty-six firefighters were called to a two-story residence on Russell Street in Essendon at about 2am this morning.
MFB commander Shane Roads said "Access for firefighters was difficult with bars and boarding material covering all of the windows along the front of the premises,"
"Crews used a specialist aerial appliance (similar to a cherry picker) to gain entry to the roof where most of the smoke was issuing."
All 13 were safely evacuated and unharmed.
The fire caused extensive damage to a front room and most of the roof and took just over 40 minutes to bring under control.
The repair bill has been estimated at up to $200,000.
It has already been labelled as suspicious and specialist investigators will visit the residence later this morning to confirm this.