The cause of California’s Silverado fire that caused state officials to evacuate 100,000 people in Orange County has been revealed.
According to California authorities, a half-burned cigarette caused the fire to break out near Irvine on Monday morning. It’s already responsible for destroying more than 8,000 acres.
Firefighters say the smoker threw it out onto dry brush on Peterson Road. With the help of 30 mph winds, the blaze broke out Monday outside the Travis AFB South Gate near Highway 12 and Walters Rd in Solano County.
“We did find a half burned cigarette butt that was indicative of the start of this fire,” Suisun Fire Chief Justin Vincent said.
Additionally, the fire chief says that two firefighters have been seriously hurt while tackling the fire.
Southern California Edison had previously reported that a power line may have played a role in igniting the Silverado Fire.
The initial safety incident report describes overhead electrical facilities in the area where authorities thought the fire began, but notes there was no activity on the circuit.
‘We reported the incident despite seeing no activity on the nearby 12-kV circuit nor any downed power lines because it appears that a lashing wire attached to a telecommunications line may have contacted SCE’s power line above it, possibly starting the fire,’ SCE spokesman Chris Abel told CNN.
Dry weather and high winds has led to at least one other fire in the sunshine state. The Blue Ridge Fire also broke out on Monday near Yorba Linda. So far, it has torched more than 6,600 acres.
Further, a million people are still without power after it was shut off amid high winds.