DALTON, Ga. - The downtown Dalton fire that destroyed a number of businesses in historic Peacock Alley more than two weeks ago started between the ceiling and the roof near the back of the building, according to a news release from the Dalton Fire Department.
The fire was not intentionally set, the release said.
Investigators from the Dalton Fire Department, private investigators and insurance adjusters were on the scene all day Friday, being briefed and sifting through debris to determine the origin of the fire.
Dalton fire Chief Bruce Satterfield said Friday evening several items had been removed from the scene and sent for further testing. He said he did not know how long it would be before those tests were completed.
More than a dozen people took part in the investigation, including investigators from the Georgia State Fire Marshal's Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, the news release said.
The investigators dug through the layers of debris. Because evidence could have been destroyed, the investigation was done with everyone involved at the scene, the news release said.
Satterfield stressed that, despite the various agencies involved in the investigation, the Dalton Fire Department is conducting the investigation.
"It is still our investigation, and we will work to determine the cause of the fire," he said.
Satterfield previously said that the old building had various layers between the ceiling and the roof, making it difficult to access the fire before it spread into the rest of the building.
Contact staff writer Mariann Martin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 706-980-5824.