Firefighters battled two early-morning structure fires Tuesday in Omaha, including one possibly caused by arson that injured two fire captains.
Both homes were unoccupied, officials said.
The firefighters were taken to the Nebraska Medical Center and later released.
Capt. Jeff Crnkovich and another firefighter fell through a floor in the house about two blocks north of 33rd and Cuming Streets, said Capt. Tim McCaw.
Crnkovich injured his shoulder in the fall from the first story to the basement. The other firefighter was not hurt.
Also during the fire response, Capt. Brent Evanoff suffered smoke inhalation.
Fire investigators suspect the blaze that began about 5:45 a.m. was deliberately set.
Eight firetrucks and at least three rescue squads were called as flames and smoke poured out the back and roof of the house. Firefighters using chainsaws cut two holes in the roof.
Smoke filled the neighborhood to the north as southerly breezes pushed through the area.
Neighbors said the rental house had been vacant for about a week.
Homes next door sustained damage to their vinyl siding, including Brian Dailey's home to the south.
“I was awakened by my wife, who said she could smell smoke,” said Dailey, 44. “I looked outside and saw flames shooting out the back.
“Everybody's fine,” Dailey said of his wife and children.
About 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, fire debris in the backyard rekindled and firefighters were called back to douse that blaze.
Earlier, firefighters tackled a fire that began in a detached garage near 36th Street and Woolworth Avenue and quickly spread.
The fire sparked about 3 a.m. in the Field Club neighborhood and burned through two garages, three vehicles and the outside of two houses.
No injuries were reported, and the cause remains under investigation.
One man was arrested near the fire on an unrelated matter, officials said. The 29-year-old became disorderly and combative, kicking, head-butting and spitting at officers, who used a Taser to bring him under control.
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