Wednesday, 14 November, 2018

Firefighters Battle Blazes in California and Utah

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Ellis Copeland | 30 June, 2017, 00:42

More than 1,500 people have been forced from their homes by the largest wildfire burning in the United States. Known as the Frye fire, the blaze burning on Mt.

The Type 1 Incident Management team is now overseeing fire suppression on the eastern side of the Brian Head fire from Panguitch.

The fire has grown to almost two square miles.

Fifteen-hundred people have been evacuated and 13 homes and eight outbuildings have been destroyed, said fire spokeswoman Elayn Briggs. He said the money should be used to help cover what is now an estimated $7 million bill to fight the Brian Head fire.

"Those are very favorable conditions for spreading a fire", said National Weather Service lead forecaster Greg Martin.

As fire containment lines increase on portions of the fire, the assigned resources will be shifted to more active portions of the fire.

On Monday, the wind was pushing flames in the direction of two mountain communities, Poppet Flats and Silent Valley, Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department Capt. Lucas Spelman said.

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The wildfire was initially started by someone using a torch tool to burn weeds near the popular ski resort. The winds, combined with high heat and low humidity, have greatly elevated fire conditions along the the hillsides leading into the San Gorgonio Pass, experts say. Voluntary evacuations were issued for Highland Home Road, Death Valley Road, Longhorn Road and Shirleon Drive, according to the fire department.

There were a total of 36 crews with 1,140 firefighters working the blaze with 49 engines and 11 helicopters, according to the Great Basin Coordination Center.

"Most of the fire activity has occurred in the areas outside and north of town, and due to the extraordinary efforts of firefighters, Brian Head resort, the town of Brian Head and other local businesses have been unaffected by the fire", Wilkerson said in a statement. Mayer is located about 70 miles north of Phoenix. "It's been a dry month and we had at least four - maybe five fires - on Saturday alone, and they're all human-caused".

The Santa Clarita fire, which started on Sunday on the 14 Freeway after a vehicle rolled over onto dry brush, had burned 870 acres as of Monday, according to Christopher Craft, an official with the Santa Clarita fire department.

Another caller tells dispatchers he was driving when he saw a fire started by a cabin owner who was burning shrubs around the home.

"There will be uncertainty until you get up there and walk through it", said Ms Powell, 32, who lives about one hour away in Cedar City.

Elsewhere in the West, a blaze burned in suburban Los Angeles, a complex of three major fires burned in Washington and more than 20 small lightning-sparked blazes were stopped in Idaho.

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