Palo Alto police and the Santa Clara County Arson Task Force are jointly investigating a suspicious fire that destroyed a vacant home on a residential street on Palo Alto early Monday morning, police said.
The Police Department's dispatch center received an emergency call at 3:51 a.m. about a house fire in the 200 block of Matadero Avenue, according to Detective Sgt. Brian Philip.
Officers and the Palo Alto Fire Department arrived to find the home fully engulfed in flames, Philip said.
The fire department doused the blaze within 25 minutes and kept it from spreading to neighboring homes, Philip said.
Police learned that the home had been boarded up and vacant for several years and gas and other utilities had been shut off, Philip said.
Since there is not obvious source of ignition, the fire is considered suspicious, Philip said.
No one so far has reported seeing anyone on the property prior to the blaze, Philip said.
Police and the arson task force were still inspecting the ruins of the home Monday, which is a total loss, Philip said.