An inquiry has been launched by police after a fire left a house severely damaged by smoke.
Three appliances from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service were called to the two-storey end link property in Shrewsbury Crescent in Humbledon at 12.30am today.
The living room was damaged by the fire, with the rest of the ground floor and upstairs severely damaged by smoke.
Six firefighters wearing breathing apparatus were sent in to tackle the fire using hose reels, with a fan then used to clear the property of smoke.
She said: “Police were called to a fire at a premises in Shrewsbury Crescent in Sunderland at 12.36am today.
“The incident is currently being treated as a suspected arson and inquires are ongoing.
"As a result, residents can expect to see an increase in police presence in the area, and officers should be approached if anyone has concerns.
“The property was empty at the time of the fire and no-one was injured.
“Anyone with information or who saw anything suspicious is asked to call 101 quoting log number 38 of March 17 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”