AN EMPTY house is believed to have been set on fire in Nelson.

Two crews were called to Smith Street at around 5.30pm on Sunday after reports that the ground floor of the terrace house was well alight.

The blaze is being treated as suspicious and investigations are continuing.

Watch manager Neil Hardiman said: “When we arrived, the living room was fully engulfed and the flames were spreading up the stairs.

“We are investigating with the police to identify whether the fire was started deliberately or accidentally although it does seem to be of a suspicious nature.”

An elderly woman who lived near the house was treated at the scene for smoke inhalation as a precaution.