Investigators On The Hunt For Indian Trail Fire Source

SPOKANE — The fire in the Indian Trail area is not sitting well with homeowners, especially since several fires recently have appeared to have been deliberately set.

Fire investigators believe Tuesday’s fire started along Indian Trail while two other recent fires started up the hill. Investigators haven’t found a link between these fires more than area and time frame but they’re not ruling a connection out yet either.

Fire investigator Forrest Ownbey is trying to peer into the past; he’s looking through a magnifying glass to see what sparked a wildfire 24 hours ago. Omnbey and his partner scoured the side of Indian Trail road today at the spot where they think the nine acre blaze started.

The fire moved fast yesterday and burned within 100 yards of several homes. Firefighters say planes and helicopters dropping water and retardant are the reason the homes weren’t destroyed by the fire.

Witnesses said Tuesday they heard the sound of fireworks in the area before they saw smoke.

“Lot of people heard fireworks and it started right near the road,” resident Alech Hunter said.

Ownbey is investigating if fireworks are to blame and if this fire could be related to two others in the area in the past two weeks. So far he’s not saying they’re connected, but not ruling out they’re not connected either.

Investigators searched for the source of Tuesday’s fire and found a cigarette butt but question whether it was the cause.

“Generally cigarettes are rarely the cause of a fire,” Ownbey said. “It takes a higher temperature or specific fuels and grass is not one of the better fuels to start a fire in.”

Residents whose homes were threatened by the fire are concerned someone may be intentionally setting fires in the area.

If fire investigators can determine what started the fire and then who started it, that person could be forced the pay the thousands and thousands of dollars to put this fire out.