High winds spread fire from one house to another in Independence

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INDEPENDENCE, Mo. -- Firefighters fought two vacant house fires early Tuesday morning in Independence. The first fire started at a home located near Crysler and Walnut streets and quickly spread to a neighboring vacant house due to high winds with gusts up to 40 miles per hour.

Firefighters said the home where the fire started had been on their radar before. The owner was reported for fire code violations in the past. Firefighters said if they hadn't acted quickly, other homes may have been at risk due to high winds.

"We had embers blowing up half the block," David Shelley, firefighter, said.

The owner of one of the homes said he had recently renovated the house and was planning to rent it.

Both homes were destroyed. The exact cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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