While metro-area investigators work together to find the cause of Thursday’s fires that destroyed dozens of homes and more than 2,000 acres of grass and trees, federal and state officials will start assessing damage across the state.
Two Federal Emergency Management Agency teams will begin assessing fire damage across the state today, said Albert Ashwood, state emergency management director.
One FEMA team will look at damage in Oklahoma and Lincoln counties and another will be in southern Oklahoma in mostly Carter and Stephens counties. The teams are expected to wrap up their work totaling structures burned by Wednesday, Ashwood said.
Because of the large area affected, Oklahoma City arson investigators are working with Midwest City to identify causes of fires that stretched across both jurisdictions, Oklahoma City Battalion Chief Homer Jones said Monday.
Midwest City officials said the Midwest City-Choctaw fire was set about 3 p.m. Thursday at SE 29 and Post Road and spread northeast. It destroyed 12 Midwest City homes, and embers carried by winds gusting to 50 mph devoured 58 Choctaw homes.
"The fire was intentionally set,” Midwest City Fire Marshal Jerry Lojka said. "We have nothing more to release. We’re following up on leads and completing interviews at this time.”
The cause of a 5-square-mile fire in Oklahoma City that destroyed 17 structures near Lake Stanley Draper has not been determined.