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Police set up crime scene after fire

A BUSH and grass fire that broke out in Sydney’s west this afternoon and damaged a townhouse is being investigated as arson.

Eight crews were called to the fire in Mount Druitt just before 4pm today after neighbours noticed the grassland was on fire.

The fire originally only affected a grass patch on Hythe Street but with today’s heatwave, it quickly spread to a neighbouring street, threatening a handful of homes.

The backyard of one townhouse was full of items, causing the fire to take hold there and spread to the ground level of the home.

A shed, pergola and the ground floor of the townhouse were ruined by the fire.

NSW Police are now investigating the ferocious fire after receiving a tip it might’ve been deliberately lit.

The one hectare piece of parkland has been declared a crime scene and police are looking for an arsonist.

Witnesses spoke about the speed the fire spread and how most people didn’t realise it was coming close to their homes.

“It just spread really fast. The people in the houses didn’t know that anything was going on. I just jumped into survival mode and started knocking on doors trying to get people out,” resident Jack Brammal told 9 News.

Dramatic helicopter footage from the scene shows crews hosing down the grassy area as smoke billows above houses.

One police officer was taken to hospital for smoke inhalation.

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