According to a press release from the sheriff’s office, when the first deputy arrived on the scene, area residents were attempting to put out the fire, which reportedly started in the northwest corner of the residence.
According to the press release, the 62-year-old male resident of the home was Mark J. Abolt.
The release stated that fire units and a dozen firefighters from Meeker Fire and Rescue responded to extinguish the fire, which took several hours. Water tankers from private companies working in the area oil and gas fields were used to supply water.
Due to the age of the home, the amount of fire, smoke and water damage and the amount of property that was stored inside the residence, the cause of the fire was undetermined as there were a number of possible ignition sources where the fire could have started, the release stated.
Abolt was taken to Pioneers Medical Center in Meeker, and he was still in the hospital as of Monday. However, RBCSO officials said it was expected that he would be medically released later in the day.
The Colorado Bureau of Investigation arson team from Denver was in Rio Blanco County on Friday to assist the sheriff’s office with the investigation.