West Side Fire Rips Through 2 Vacant Buildings

December 20, 2011 Updated Dec 20, 2011 at 8:17 PM EDT

By Kyla Igoe

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December 20, 2011 Updated Dec 20, 2011 at 8:17 PM EDT


Buffalo, NY (WKBW) - Buffalo Firefighters spent the early morning Tuesday tackling a fire inside an abandoned home on Busti Avenue. Crews responded just after 3 a.m. to the 400 block of Busti Avenue and were told a squatter could be inside the building. No one was found. The fire spread to the vacant building next door, where 4 homeless people were taking shelter. The men escaped the second building without injury.

"We looked out the windows and we saw the flames. We started running," said Jorge Ortiz, who is currently living inside the abandoned building.

Buffalo Fire Marshals spent much of the morning on the scene, while an emergency demolition was called in for the property. The cause of the blaze is still under investigation. Damage is estimated at $10,000 for the second abandoned building.