IMAGES: Louisville firefighters battle 'heavy fire' at corner of - WDRB 41 Louisville News

IMAGES: Louisville firefighters battle 'heavy fire' at corner of 22nd Street and W. Ormsby

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A fire in west Louisville early Tuesday destroyed one home and damaged two others. 

Investigators believe the fire started in an abandoned house before spreading to another nearby home. Now investigators are trying to determine what started the fire in the abandoned home.

As smoke began to fill the streets, Ronald Bradley called 911.

"It was just black, billowing smoke and then flames got taller than the house," Bradley said. 

Within minutes crews arrived and began to attack the fire that was spreading quickly.

"They were all very close, in close proximity, so our main goal was that that initial fire did not spread to the one that had the least damage."

As crews took a defensive stance while battling the flames, the back of the house collapsed.

"At that time we did not have firefighters inside because it was very unsafe to have firefighters in there, and at that time we had already learned the house was vacant," said Capt. Salvador Melendez with Louisville Fire and Rescue. 

Investigators say the utilities had been shut off in the vacant home awhile back. 

Once fire crews arrived, the fire was under control in about 20 minutes.

By that time smoke and flames had already destroyed the house where the blaze began, and caused extensive damage to a second vacant home. A third house received minor damage.

Now arson investigators are trying to determine the cause of the fire. 

"It has a question mark," Melendez said. "What we don't know in that regard is whether it was accidental or intentionally set but we can rule out that it was set by something electrically or gas related."

No injuries were reported. 

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