FARMINGTON — Davis County’s portion of the firefighting cost to battle Farmington’s Rudd Canyon wildland fire has yet to be determined.
But because 13.9 acres of the fire occurred on U.S. Forest Service lands, and only one-tenth of an acre of the fire occurred on county land, county officials may breathe a deep sigh of relief.
Fire officials suspect the cost to the county will not likely exceed the $41,928 the county budgeted in 2011 to cover wildland fire suppression.
Wasatch Front Fire Management Officer Allen Briggs, with the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire & State Lands, shared the information at the Davis County Commission’s meeting Tuesday.
Briggs said the county land consumed in the July 27 fire appears to be where the fire originated.
“Any fire that happens in Davis County is a concern to us,” said Commissioner Louenda Downs.
Farmington’s Rudd Canyon wildland fire was sparked by individuals discharging firearms in the area.
Because of the threat the wildfire posed, burning within a half-mile of Farmington homes, numerous fire agencies were called to respond.
Fifty-five firefighters from multiple Davis fire agencies pitched in.
“It cost a lot of money to respond with that much force,” said Jason Curry, spokesman for the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire & State Lands.
The U.S. Forest Service is investigating the incident.
The agreement among the public entities allows for a balancing of the tally sheet when crews are asked to respond to a wildfire on multijurisdictional lands, Curry said.
Anytime a large wildfire poses a “danger to life and property,” a mutual-aid agreement among the state, counties and cities calls for the mobilization of all area fire agencies, Curry said.
“It did get pretty close (to homes).”
He said there was some uncertainty as a result of a weather forecast calling for strong winds.
In battling a canyon fire, Curry said, there is always the threat that down-canyon winds can push the fire down the mountain toward homes built on the East Bench.
On Tuesday, the commission also approved a contract with the division for a cost-sharing agreement for calendar year 2012.
The amount budgeted by the county for fire suppression, as it relates to the state, will be $42,011, said Commissioner Bret Millburn.
He said that total is up slightly from the $41,928 the county budgeted in 2011 in its agreement with the state for fire suppression.
Briggs said the success the state has had in containing wildland fires along the Wasatch Front has kept costs down.