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KRQE News 13

Cause of Colorado’s most destructive wildfire revealed

By Audrey Claire Davis,


NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The cause of Colorado’s most destructive wildfire, nearly two years ago, has been released. Authorities say there will not be any charges filed.

In December 2021, the Marshall Fire destroyed nearly 1,100 homes and left two people dead in the suburbs between Denver and Boulder. It also caused $2 billion worth of damage.

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After an 18-month investigation, authorities found the fire actually began as two separate fires: one from a smoldering burn pile, and another caused by a sparking power line. The blaze spread quickly because of windy and dry conditions.

“In the spring of 2021, we had significant precipitation which helped vegetation throughout the county grow thick and healthy and strong. But that was followed by months of hot, dry conditions, and all of that vegetation, including tall grasses, shrubs, and trees were extremely dry by December,” says Sheriff Curtis Johnson in Boulder County.

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