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New information tonight about where last month's destructive Poinsettia Fire began. Investigators now confirm it started on a local golf course. The fire took the community by surprise. NBC 7's Catherine Garcia reports.
NBC 7 Investigates has learned that the Poinsettia Fire that damaged homes and threatened businesses in Carlsbad started just north of the seventh green on the Omni La Costa Golf Course.
It's what some locals have long suspected.
On May 14 at 10:30 a.m., landscaper Adam Jordan used his phone to capture the first images of a soon-to-be raging fire.
"It was so rapid and fast, it was like there was gasoline already on the things, on the trees, on the bushes, it lit up so quick," Jordan told NBC 7.
Moment's later the video shows the fire jumping Poinsettia Lane and the thick black smoke rising higher.
Strong winds pushed the flames faster into neighborhoods on a day when nine fires threatened homes around San Diego County.
The Poinsettia Fire would go on to burn 600 acres and destroy 23 homes and apartments in Carlsbad.
Carlsbad Police Lt. Mike Larson said that although the fire’s origin has been determined, the cause is still under investigation.
Lt. Larson said investigators haven’t ruled out arson, but so far, the fire doesn’t appear to have been set intentionally.
Early in the investigation, there were reports that a golfer’s cigar may have started the fire. Lt. Larson said this did not prove to be true.