State and Federal agencies joined Macon-Bibb fire investigators to identify the cause of Thursday's blaze at the Atlantic Cotton Mill.
Fire Chief Marvin Riggins says the building's owner, Mercer University, contracted workers to take out scrap metal on the property. He says they were working Thursday.
"That has been determined to be true, that metal was cut on the facility yesterday (Thursday), one of the areas we are going to explore," said Riggins.
Riggins says cutting metal can create sparks, leading to a fire. He says they don't know whether workers cut scrap metal at the time of the fire.
The chief says the blaze likely started in the warehouse and says they're combing that area for another possible cause, petroleum.
He said the state Fire Marshal's office and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms were among the agencies helping with the investigation.