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Two Ironton fires being investigated, one ruled arson

It may have been a holiday, but it was hardly a day away from work for the Ironton Fire Department.

Firefighters started and ended their Fourth of July by battling blazes. One fire resulted in an arson arrest and the other is under investigation.

At 8:46 a.m., firefighters were called to 1204 South Third Street to extinguish a fire that started in a garage and spread to a duplex apartment building beside Advance Auto Parts.

"Half of the garage was completely destroyed and the house suffered considerable damage to the exterior, the upstairs and the attic," Ironton Fire Department Capt. Mike Mahlmeister said.

Both sides of the duplex were occupied but no one was injured in the blaze.

Mahlmeister said a man and woman who were driving by the house noticed the fire and summoned help, but left the scene before fire officials had the opportunity to talk to them. Mahlmeister asked that the people who reported the fire call the fire department and speak with him or Chief Tom Runyon.

"It is not by a natural cause," Runyon said of the second blaze. "It is under investigation and we're still working this particular case. The garage was opened and there was some abandoned furniture in it and stuff. There was no power to the building."

Then just before midnight Monday night, a garage at 1909 S. Third St. caught fire.

Ronda

L. Adkins, 48, of 1905 S. Third St., was charged with aggravated arson in connection with that incident and taken to jail. She will appear in Ironton Municipal Court today for arraignment.

Ironton police detective Jim Akers said he does not know yet what prompted Adkins to allegedly start the fire.

"I don't know yet," Akers said. "She won't talk to me."