(July 25, 2013) An overnight fire in Frisco is the fifth in the same neighborhood in nearly three months. Investigators say this morning’s fire outside a home in the 600 block of Burr Oak is ‘suspicious’. Though no one was hurt, residents were home when fire broke out, which Frisco Fire Chief Mark Piland says is significant.
“It was the first fire where we actually had occupants inside the home,” Piland said. “This certainly was different from previous fires.”
Two previous residential fires (May 20/June 8) involved homes under construction. Investigators have determined those fires were intentionally set. Another residential fire on July 21 at a furnished home up ‘for sale’ is now considered ‘suspicious’. A vehicle was set on fire May 23. No one was injured as a result of the fires.
Chief Piland credits the Frisco police officer patrolling the neighborhood with noticing this morning’s fire early. He praised the police officer, who alerted dispatchers, during this morning’s news conference.
“He (the Frisco police officer) saw the smoke coming over the top of the residence and attempted to
extinguish the fire,” said Chief Piland. “It was a significant event here. We got the fire in the very early stages.”
Frisco firefighters were called to the scene at 3:35 a.m. Crews arrived at the home in the 600 block of Burr Oak at 3:41 a.m. The fire was put out by 3:44 a.m. Damage to the home was minor.
The Frisco Fire Department and its investigators are being assisted by the Frisco Police Department. Police Chief John Bruce also spoke at this morning’s news conference.
“We’re a 24/7 operation,” said Chief Bruce. “We are working in the neighborhood. We have more than routine patrol out in the area.”
Chief Bruce urged residents to report any suspicious person or activity, reiterating that residents should not hesitate to contact police.
“We’re looking for things that are suspicious. Just call,” said Chief Bruce. “It’s important. We want to find out who’s doing this and stop the fires.”
To report suspicious people or activities, dial 9-1-1 or call the department's non-emergency number, 972-292-6010. Residents can also text an anonymous tip by texting FRISCOPD and the tip to 847411 (tip411).
Also during this morning’s news conference, Mayor Maher Maso thanked the City of Denton and the State Fire Marshal’s Office, which are assisting in the ongoing investigation.
“Public safety is the number one priority for our city council,” said Mayor Maso. “We’re throwing a lot of resources at this and we’re confident that we will catch this coward (or cowards) who may be causing these fires.”
“The real strength of Frisco has always been the cooperation and involvement of our residents,” added Mayor Maso. “We’re asking them to keep their eyes and ears open, to report any suspicious activities no matter how minor.”
Chief Piland says investigators are working “vigorously” to solve the string of fires, but reiterated the importance of residents’ help.
“Sometimes, some of the best information that we get is from the people who live in the community and we’re asking for their help,” said Chief Piland.
To see today’s news conference in its entirety, go to the City of Frisco YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/cityoffriscotx