CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A home on Rutledge Avenue was destroyed by a fire early Thursday morning. Two other homes were also damaged and a portion of Rutledge Avenue was shut down, but reopened just before 5 p.m.
Officials now say arson is a possible cause of the fire. The fire started around 4 a.m. at a home located at 247 Rutledge Ave. near the intersection of Bogard Street. The fire destroyed the home, leaving little of the building standing.
The fire then quickly spread to two other nearby homes. The house next door, 245 Rutledge Ave., suffered significant damage. The home next to that is 243 Rutledge Ave, which suffered some exterior damage, but looks to be repairable.
Eight cars were also damaged from the extreme temperature of the flames.
SCE&G working on repairing a gas leak caused my fire. Gas line has been turned off, but crews are having to dig up the street to repair it. Road is expected to be closed for most of the day.
Rutledge Avenue, from the Crosstown to Spring Street, is still closed.
The Charleston City Fire Dept. says everyone is accounted for and no one was injured.
SCE&G responded to the scene to deal with power and gas issues. Crews are working on repairing a gas leak caused by the fire. The gas line has been turned off, but crews are having to dig up the street to repair it. Rutledge Avenue is expected to be closed for most of the day.
Several surrounding homes were evacuated until firefighters from multiple agencies were able to get the fires under control. Many residents said they were woken up to the sound of broken glass and the smell of smoke.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Stay with Live5news.com for more information as it becomes available.