Two city firefighters were injured and a woman suffered smoke inhalation when a fire set by a child playing with matches swept through a two-story rowhouse yesterday evening in the 2100 block of Walbrook Avenue.
Capt. Paul Geoghegan, of the fire investigation bureau, said that shortly after 6 p.m., a 6-year-old boy was playing with matches inside a first-floor closet in his home on Walbrook Avenue when several pieces of clothing caught fire.
The child may have dropped the match on the clothing when it burned down to his fingers, which showed signs of blistering, said Captain Geoghegan.
After the child ran to the second floor to escape the fire, flames raced through the first-floor, breaking through the living room ceiling and entering the rooms on the upper floor, Captain Geoghegan said.
The child, whose name was not disclosed, and at least two relatives ran down the burning stairway and out the front door to safety.
Two firefighters were slightly injured and were treated at Mercy Medical Center and released, Captain Geoghegan said.
Lorraine Spencer, 45, of 2107 Walbrook Ave., suffered minor smoke inhalation and hyperventilation and was treated at the Maryland Shock-Trauma Center and released, the fire official said.
A first alarm was sounded at 6:18 p.m. and a second alarm at 6:26 p.m. The fire destroyed 2109 Walbrook Ave. and damaged the homes on both sides.
The fire, which was declared under control at 7:19 p.m., caused at least $60,000 damage to the structure and contents of 2109 Walbrook Ave., and a combined $30,000 damage to 2107 and 2111, Captain Geoghegan said.