Firefighters work to extinguish a fire that engulfed an abandoned home on the northwest corner of Monaville Road and Cedar Lake Road in Lake Villa Friday evening. | Photo: Joe Shuman/J. Shuman Photography (2023)

Police and fire officials are investigating “highly suspicious” fires that engulfed two different abandoned houses in Lake Villa just an hour apart Friday evening.

The Lake Villa Police Department and Lake Villa Fire Protection District responded around 9:45 p.m. Friday to the area of Monaville Road and Cedar Lake Road.

Multiple 911 callers reported the house on the northwest corner of the intersection had flames coming from it.

Firefighters from Round Lake arrived on the scene first and confirmed a two-story residence was fully engulfed in flames.

All traffic on Monaville Road in front of the structure was shut down by officers while crews worked to extinguish the fire.

Firefighters work to extinguish a fire that engulfed an abandoned home on the northwest corner of Monaville Road and Cedar Lake Road in Lake Villa Friday evening. | Photo: Joe Shuman/J. Shuman Photography (2023)

While firefighters were still on the scene, they received a call around 10:55 p.m. for an open burning complaint near Electric Harbor Bar, 38470 North Columbia Bay Road in unincorporated Lake Villa.

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A crew from the Gurnee Fire Department, which was covering Lake Villa, responded to the call.

The engine crew arrived 10 minutes later to find a working house fire in the 25400 block of West Cedar Crest Lane.

The incident was upgraded through the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS).

Flames engulf an abandoned home in the 25400 block of West Cedar Crest Lane in unincorporated Lake Villa, the second house fire that occurred Friday evening in the area. | Photo: Joe Shuman/J. Shuman Photography (2023)

The house, which is approximately a five-minute drive from the first house fire, is in an area that does not have fire hydrants.

Fire department water tender trucks were called to haul water to the scene.

The residence collapsed due to the flames. An abandoned car and a shed were also engulfed in flames.

Lake County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Chief Christopher Covelli said the sheriff’s office and the Lake Villa police and fire departments are investigating both fires.

Flames engulf a car at the scene of a house fire in the 25400 block of West Cedar Crest Lane in unincorporated Lake Villa, the second house fire that occurred Friday evening in the area. | Photo: Joe Shuman/J. Shuman Photography (2023)

“Two fires with similar properties, around the same time is highly suspicious,” Covelli told Lake and McHenry County Scanner.

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Both residences were abandoned at the time of the fires. No injuries were reported in either.

Sheriff’s detectives and sheriff’s arson investigators are working with other investigators to gather additional information.

Authorities will hold “the offender(s) accountable” if it is confirmed to be arson, Covelli said.