100-Acre Brush Fire Ruled Arson

BOONE COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A brush fire that covered 100 acres of ground is now out, but investigators say the fire was no accident.

Thanks to people like Charlie Spencer with the West Virginia Division of Forestry -- it didn't get close to any homes, but the damage caused on the mountain is bad enough.

“You have a lot of ash that's on the ground. When it rains, this ash is gonna run off,” Spencer said. “If you're on a really steep slope, some of this black ash can go right into a stream causing problems for fish and other aquatic wildlife.”

It was a domino effect to a fire that investigators say was intentional.

“People have different motivations. Some people think it clears the underbrush out, but it doesn't really,” Spencer said. “Also, some people as with a home -- some people just have a fetish or some kind of thing in their mind about fire.”

Whoever started this one hasn't been caught -- leaving others to pay the price.

“It's pretty frustrating. People don't think about the consequences it causes other people,” Spencer said. “I've got burning permits I need to write for places right now. We could be doing other things, but we're out here fighting a fire.”

This particular fire was about a mile from any homes. It was burning on a mountain near Route 17 in the Ottawa area.

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