SEDONA, Ariz. – Firefighters battling a 1,500-acre wildfire that destroyed five buildings south of this scenic northern Arizona community concentrated Friday on protecting unscathed homes.
The blaze moved into uninhabited wilderness, but crews continued to douse areas in a 200-home subdivision.
Investigators said the fire appeared to have been started by sparks from the grinder of a fencing company that was working on a fence post Thursday afternoon.
U.S. Forest Service officials said the company could be held responsible for some of the cost of fighting the blaze.
Thirty homes in the Pine Valley subdivision near the Village of Oak Creek were evacuated because of the fire, which quickly grew from 40 acres.
Sedona Fire District Chief Matt Shobert said that while most of the homes remained safe, plant life around them was charred. "You'll be shocked when you go home," he told some of the evacuees. "It's totally black."
Two homes, a small shed and an outbuilding burned before the fire moved into the wilderness Thursday night, Shobert said.