MARYLAND

Riverdale flash fire caused by arson

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The search is on for an arsonist believed to be responsible for setting the fire that injured seven firefighters in Prince George's County.

PG County Executive Rushern Baker and Fire Chief Marc Bashoor at Medstar with Michael McClary, 19, a Riverdale volunteer firefighter.

While investigating the fire in Riverdale Heights, officials discovered someone had set fire just weeks before in the house next door. The flames died out before anyone noticed. Officials found that both fires were set in the basement and both houses were left abandoned months ago.

Authorities believe the same person or persons set the two fires.

"I want to say to those responsible that you can be assured that you will be apprehended and you will be prosecuted," said the States Attorney for Prince George's County.

Tuesday night, one of the most seriously injured firefighters Ethan Sorrell, finally went home.

On Wednesday, Keith O'Toole was the last firefighter remaining at the hospital with second and third degree burns on more than 50 percent of his body. He is still in critical condition.

Neighbors in the community where the fire was set are worried their home could be next.

Resident Tom Carpenter recalled an arson fire at another abandoned home on the same street just two years ago.

Authorities are looking at all arsons in the area.

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