Vacant house fire spreads to neighboring Detroit senior citizens' homes

Posted: 6:02 PM, Sep 06, 2016
Updated: 2016-09-06 18:02:19-04

Two long time Detroit families are struggling to pick up the pieces after a fire in a vacant house spread.

Annie Worthan was getting ready for bed this past Friday night when she smelled smoke. 

The 67-year-old went outside and spotted flames shooting out of the vacant house next door. She quickly ran to elderly neighbor’s home on the other side to get her out. 

“I was banging, and banging," she says. "I said 'Ms. Bragg, get out, get out the house next door is on fire.'”

Safely outside, the elderly women watched as the flames spread to both their homes. Neither had home owner’s insurance. Living on a fixed budget, they couldn’t afford it. 

Making matters worse, they and others say they have complained countless times about the vacant house, which had been set on fire in the past.

The Detroit Land Bank Authority currently owns the vacant house. 

The City of Detroit’s Housing and Revitalization Department will be reaching out to the families to offer assistance.