Black Forest Fire location of origin determined but being kept secret during investigation

BLACK FOREST, Colo. - The investigation into the cause of the Black Forest Fire has determined the fire's location of origin, but it is being kept a secret as investigators continue working to learn the cause.

The Black Forest Fire started on the afternoon of June 11. In the nine days before it was full contained, the fire killed two people, destroyed 511 homes and consumed 14,280 acres.

The El Paso County Sheriff's Office says investigators haven't yet determined the cause of the fire, but are still working to figure it out. So far they've searched the area of origin, conducted interviews and executed "multiple search warrants."

"With a high degree of certainty, we have ruled out any natural cause for the fire, such as lightning," the Sheriff's Office wrote in a statement.

On the other hand, a Colorado Bureau of Investigation dog trained to detect accelerants found no signs of an accelerant having been used in the area of origin. Specialized equipment came to the same conclusion.

The next steps, the Sheriff's Office says, are to continue analyzing the information they've gathered to determine the cause of the fire.

"Investigators are considering any number of intentional or accidental causes to the fire such as mechanical sources like sparks from machinery or hot components on motors and exhaust systems," the Sheriff's Office said.

Anyone with information about the cause of the fire is asked to call the tip line at 719-444-8393 or email blackforestfiretipline@elpasoco.com.