Needles FireNEEDLES–Authorities with the San Bernardino County Fire Department suspect a fire that destroyed three homes and displaced a family was an act of arson.

The first fire reportedly ignited shortly before 1 p.m. Saturday in the 200 block of I Street in Needles and swiftly moved to the neighboring home, setting that a blaze.

Hot temperatures and strong winds hindered fire personnel from quickly attempting to extingush the two homes, causing a third one behind the two to catch on fire. All homes were vacant at the time, but one family was in the process of moving into one of the homes that caught fire.

According to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Office, witnesses reported seeing a suspicious person around the scene of the fire prior to the homes going up in flames.

One person was detained, but further investigation determined the person was not connected to the fire.

A mutual aid call was made to neighboring fire departments in Arizona and closed off traffic in the area.

The fire was fully extinguished Saturday night.

Anyone with information about the possible arson is asked to contact SBCSO at 760-326-9200. For those wishing to remain anonymous are urged to call We-Tip Hotline at 1-800-782-7463, or leave information at www.wetip.com.

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