At least 5 fires in Hegewisch could be linked, officials say

CHICAGO — Chicago police are investigating a suspicious fire on the Far South Side that sent three firefighters to the hospital.

Officials believe the blaze is connected to a string of recent arsons in the Hegewisch neighborhood.

Saturday’s fire was set in a garage behind a vacant apartment building at 135th Street and Baltimore Avenue. The fire spread to an empty frame house next door and melted the siding off an adjacent garage.

Four firefighters were taken to the hospital with minor injuries. Many appeared to be battling early morning heat and humidity.

“This area’s seen a rash of fires," Assistant Deputy Fire Commissioner Brian Helmold said. "This is the seventh or eighth fire just in this area alone."

The cause of the fires hasn’t been determined, but fire officials believe the fires are being set by one person.

Chicago police consider the fires arson and are investigating. Anyone with information is asked to call arson detectives at 312-746-7618.