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Large blaze on Winnipeg’s Young Street destroys 2 homes, damages 4 others

Young Street fire leaves family looking for place to stay
WATCH: A family with five children is left devastated after an abandoned house caught fire and spread onto their rental home.

A fire on Winnipeg’s Young Street has destroyed the home of a family with five children.

The blaze could be seen from kilometres away shortly after 11 a.m.

A view of what the blaze looked like from a building downtown.
A view of what the blaze looked like from a building downtown. Marek Tkach / Global News

Firefighters say the blaze began in an abandoned duplex and quickly spread to the neighbouring house.

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The duplex was boarded up from a previous fire that happened in March 2018.

READ MORE: Winnipeg firefighters battle 3 overnight fires across the city

“This house was structurally unsound to begin with, and the rear of the yard does have a consistent amount of rubbish. As to where the fire started, that is under investigation,” said Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service Platoon Chief Ryan Marchak.

Firefighters on Young street fighting a fire that spread to six different houses.
Firefighters on Young street fighting a fire that spread to six different houses. Alison MacKinnon / Global News

Firefighter said flames could be seen shooting out of the abandoned home as high as 20 feet in the air when they first arrived.

READ MORE: 2 dead in North End house fire, 2 others taken to hospital

The family who’s rental home was destroyed told Global News one of the kids screamed to alert them of the fire.

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“One of the kids come running in yelling fire all of a sudden the window shattered, everybody ran out grabbing whatever making sure all the kids were out,” Renter, Darren Fawcett said.

READ MORE: Winnipeg house fire caused by unattended pot of oil on stove

The family was able to evacuate safely but Fawcett says all of their possessions have been destroyed.

“Now its total stress, where to go, what to do, how to take care of the kids tonight, how to transport them and how to feed them,” he said.

The family is wondering why the abandoned home wasn’t demolished sooner.

Firefighters on Young street fighting a fire that spread to six different houses.
Firefighters on Young street fighting a fire that spread to six different houses. Alison MacKinnon/ Global News

Social services worked with the family to make sure they had a place to stay.

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Six homes were affected by the blaze but no injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire is being investigated.