UPDATED: Fire torches vacant home in Medford

Updated at 10:45 a.m.

Two properties near 414 W. Jackson St. sustained some damage in this morning's fire. A side of a nearby West Jackson Street property’s paint has curled, and a corner of the structure toward the back is scorched. The two broken windows at a nearby Oak Street property are covered in plastic. The 414 W. Jackson St. home’s back end burned to the ground, and the front end was gutted by the flames.

The property is a rental home managed by Oak Tree Realtors, Inc. Jackson County property records list its current assessed value at $62,830. Tim McCullough, Oak Tree general manager, said the home’s previous tenants were evicted last week for causing some damage to the home, including some broken windows.

The next steps for the home are unclear, but the owner is insured, McCullough said. It’s the third such fire to damage an Oak Tree property this year, he added. The first one, an April fire in the 500 block of Mountain View Drive, claimed the life of the single occupant when a smoldering cigarette ignited a sofa.

“I’ve been at Oak Tree 13 years, and I think up until this year I’ve had one (fire),” McCullough said.

The fire’s cause is still under investigation. Lt. Mike Budreau of Medford police and Medford Fire-Rescue are conducting a joint investigation.

“There’s certainly the potential it could be an arson,” Budreau said.

6:55 a.m.

A fire ripped through a vacant home at 414 W. Jackson St. just before 3 a.m. today, prompting an evacuation of two nearby residences that also received minor damage from the blaze.

Medford Fire-Rescuse responded to the two-alarm fire with six engines and a crew of over 20 firefighters. The fire, which tore through the residence, had started to spread to nearby 412 W. Jackson St. The home's occupant and her cats made it out safely, Medford Fire officials said. A corner of the home was burned from the flames.

The occupant of nearby 712 Oak St. was also evacuated during knockdown efforts. The Oak Street structure also received some minor damage.

"A couple of the windows broke out from the heat," said battalion chief Brian Fish.

It took crews about 15 minutes to extinguish the blazes on the two properties adjacent to 414 W. Jackson St. and about 45 minutes to knock down the main fire. No one was hurt.

Jackson County Fire District No. 3 and Jackson County Fire District No. 5 covered city territory while city crews were on scene.

The fire's cause is still under investigation.

— Ryan Pfeil

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