MOORESVILLE, N.C. - Authorities have determined a huge fire that destroyed or damaged at least seven homes that were under construction in Mooresville was intentionally set.
Firefighters responded to Samara Lane in The Reserve at Ashlyn Creek subdivision off Kistler Farm Road and Coddle Creek Highway near Mooresville Middle School around 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.
When they arrived, the first crews saw several homes fully engulfed in fire.
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Officials said no one was hurt as the fire raged since the community is a new housing development and none of the homes were completed.
There were 13 homes being built in the subdivision and of those homes, six were considered complete losses and one home suffered serious fire damage, according to investigators. Several other buildings received minor damage from radiant heat.
Authorities said the fire spread quickly and reached four alarms, requiring more than 50 firefighters to respond and help get it under control.
Officials believe the fire spread so fast because the houses were being built so close together.
"Well, when you have several houses burning there's some large flames. Our main concern was to keep the neighbors safe and keep our firefighters safe, and to get the fire under control, and we did that just a bit ago," said Mooresville Fire Chief Curt Deaton.
Duke Energy also rushed to the scene to cut off the power, because officials said all the water firefighters used to put out the flames posed a huge threat to the live power lines.
Firefighters said it took them 90 minutes to get the fire under control and they worked all morning to put out flames and hot spots.
Officials said they determined the fire was intentionally set based on findings at the scene and eyewitness video taken before first responders got there.
A joint investigation into the cause of the fire was conducted by several agencies including Mooresville Fire and Rescue, Mooresville police, the State Bureau of Investigations, the State Fire Marshal and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
"We are now shifting our efforts to the task of identifying the person or persons responsible for this terrible act to find out why someone would purposely inflect this level of damage to another's property," Mooresville Fire Marshal Geoff Woolard said. "Thankfully, there were no civilian injuries in this incident."
Check back with wsoctv.com for updates.
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