Carbon County Attorney Alex Nixon said on Wednesday afternoon that the cause of the Robertson Draw Fire south of Red Lodge is being investigated as "human caused."
Nixon also says that a joint investigation between the U.S. Forest Service and the Carbon County Sheriff’s Office has identified a potential suspect.
Authorities have not released the name of the potential suspect, nor indicated how the fire may have started.
The fire grew to more than 20,000 acres overnight. Located 12 miles south of Red Lodge, the fire was reported on Sunday, June 13th.
At this point, there are no reports of any injuries.
On Tuesday the U.S. Forest Service said there are about 80 firefighters working to suppress the fire. Resources include handcrews, engines, helicopters, a rappel crew, and support personnel. Air tankers are supporting the incident. A Type 3 incident command was managing the fire, but authorities said a Type 2 management team has been ordered.
The fire has been burning along the east side of Line Creek Plateau and has moved around Mount Maurice.
- Area south of Highway 308 from Red Lodge to Highway 72, east of 72 to the Wyoming border. This excludes the town of Bearcreek and Belfry.
- The area west of Meeteetse Trail Road, and the east side of Highway 212 from Meeteetse Trail Road to Westminster Spires Church Camp.
- USDA Forest Service Recreation Residences in Corral Creek, Spring Creek, Snow Creek, and Sheep Creek.
- All campgrounds, dispersed camping and trailheads from the Lake Fork north to Red Lodge including the dispersed camping area just west of the Lake Fork Road.
- Town of Bearcreek
An Evacuation Order means that you should leave your home immediately. An evacuation warning is issued from the county sheriff and alerts people to be ready to go if needed. People with medical, functional, or other needs should consider evacuating if possible.