BEVERLY (CBS) – Late Monday, the State Fire Marshal’s office said Sunday’s fire in Beverly was started intentionally.

The fire began at around 9:30 p.m. in a home under construction at 36 Folger Ave. The fire quickly spread to another home under construction. Eight other homes were also damaged.

The Beverly Fire Department said something incendiary started the fire.

Officials are asking for the public’s help with the investigation. Anybody with information can call the Fire Marshal’s toll-free arson hotline at 1-800-682-9229. The hotline provides up to $5,000 as a reward for information.

Firefighters evacuated several residents from their homes as a precaution Sunday night.

The flames threw embers several hundred yards away from the scene. “I saw ashes aglow,” said Donna Howard, on whose porch ashes landed. “I’ll tell you, for a while, a good half hour, flames shooting over this way.”

A fire struck the same neighborhood two years ago. That blaze was deemed arson but no suspects were ever arrested.



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