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Contra Costa firefighters making sure a carport is not on fire as they mop up following 1 alarm fire Tuesday in Antioch. (Paul Burgarino/Bay Area News Group)

ANTIOCH -- Firefighters battled a fire outside of an Antioch apartment complex Tuesday afternoon that started in an alleyway and was fueled, in part, by a pile of mattresses.

The single alarm fire started around 4:22 p.m. off Potomac Drive, about a block west of Somersville Towne Center.

As dozens of onlookers watched, crews put out the fire within minutes.

Neighbor Billy Hardy Jr. described the intense heat of the fire, and the flames shooting up to two stories high.

"They were as tall as the building, you can tell," he said, pointing to a charred gutter that was black compared to the blue trim elsewhere.

It was the second day in a row there was a fire in the alleyway, leading Hardy to suspect the fire was set intentionally. The area had also been piled with trash, he said.

There were no injuries to firefighters or residents and the fire caused an $10,000 to $20,000 damage because of exterior damage to the apartment's stucco and roof trim, battalion chief Bob Atlas said.

Contact Paul Burgarino at 925-779-7164. Follow him at Twitter.com/paulburgarino.



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