State Fire Marshal investigating suspicious Centralia house fire

CENTRALIA — A Centralia home was heavily damaged Tuesday afternoon by a fire that officials are calling “suspicious.”

Centralia firefighters responded around 1:30 p.m. Tuesday to a home in the 500 block of South Maple where a neighbor calling 911 said flames were visible through a bedroom window.

Upon their arrival, firefighters reported smoke coming from the home. All off duty firefighters were called in to assist.

Fire reports say the resident, Justin Heern, had left the residence and left the front door open.

The fire reportedly started in a bedroom and when firefighters arrived it was fully engulfed in flames, with flames coming from two windows and out the open front door.

While firefighters were able to keep the fire confined to the bedroom, the rest of the home suffered heavy smoke damage. They were also able to keep the fire from spreading to a neighboring home.

Ameren was called to the scene. While utilities had been turned off to the residence, the meter had been jumpered so electricity could still be used.

The State Fire Marshal’s office was called to investigate the cause.