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3 weekend fires in Barrow under investigation

WINDER - Fire investigators in Barrow County are trying to pinpoint causes in a rash of residential fires over the course of last weekend.

Authorities don't suspect any of the three fires are related. No injuries were reported, but the blazes caused extensive property damage in each case. The Barrow County Fire Department's fire investigation unit is looking into each incident.

An arsonist could be behind at least one of the fires, officials said.

"It's a little on the higher side," said Fire Department spokesman Lt. Scott Dakin, commenting on the frequency of recent flame-ups. "You don't usually get three fires in a single weekend."

The first fire struck a home on McCully Drive in Auburn on Friday afternoon, reported by a neighbor who saw flames, Dakin said. Firefighters were hamstrung by a lack of fire hydrants in the area, said Dakin, and had to shuttle in water to bring the fire under control. The home's occupant was elsewhere, he said.

Early Saturday morning, fire torched a vacant mobile home on Manning Gin Road in Bethlehem. Dakin said the blaze resulted from "an undetermined human act" that could be arson or an accident. The home was destroyed.

Around 9 p.m. Sunday night, a child visiting a home in the 1500 block of Oakleaf Drive in Auburn notified the homeowner that the house was burning. Firefighters found an active fire upon arrival.

"Our crews attacked the fire aggressively and were able to bring it under control very quickly," Dakin said.