Avon Two Fire corralled, beat back by crews (Video)

Jul 12 2013 - 6:03am

Images

Members of the Weber Basin Job Corps Fire Crew work down the fire line of the Avon Two Fire in Ogden Valley on Thursday. The fire started Wednesday afternoon and grew to 95 acres by the following morning.

(BENJAMIN ZACK/Standard-Examiner)
Burnt brush lines the Weber Wildlife Federation shooting range in Ogden Valley on Thursday. The Avon Two Fire started at the range the previous day and grew to 95 acres by Thursday morning. 

(BENJAMIN ZACK/Standard-Examiner)
Members of the Weber Basin Job Corps Fire Crew work down the fire line of the Avon Two Fire in Ogden Valley on Thursday. The fire started Wednesday afternoon and grew to 95 acres by the following morning.

(BENJAMIN ZACK/Standard-Examiner)
Members of the Weber Basin Job Corps Fire Crew work down the fire line of the Avon Two Fire in Ogden Valley on Thursday. The fire started Wednesday afternoon and grew to 95 acres by the following morning.

(BENJAMIN ZACK/Standard-Examiner)
Members of the Weber Basin Job Corps Fire Crew work down the fire line of the Avon Two Fire in Ogden Valley on Thursday. The fire started Wednesday afternoon and grew to 95 acres by the following morning.

(BENJAMIN ZACK/Standard-Examiner)
Burnt brush lines the Weber Wildlife Federation shooting range in Ogden Valley on Thursday. The Avon Two Fire started at the range the previous day and grew to 95 acres by Thursday morning. 

(BENJAMIN ZACK/Standard-Examiner)
Members of the Weber Basin Job Corps Fire Crew work down the fire line of the Avon Two Fire in Ogden Valley on Thursday. The fire started Wednesday afternoon and grew to 95 acres by the following morning.

(BENJAMIN ZACK/Standard-Examiner)
Members of the Weber Basin Job Corps Fire Crew work down the fire line of the Avon Two Fire in Ogden Valley on Thursday. The fire started Wednesday afternoon and grew to 95 acres by the following morning.

(BENJAMIN ZACK/Standard-Examiner)

EDEN -- After battling the blaze around the clock, fire crews have nearly contained the Avon Two Fire.

Jason Curry, spokesman for the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands, said around 8 p.m. Thursday that crews had 90 percent containment of the fire, and they expected to fully corral the blaze early today. The fire, which had burned around 95 acres, started around 5 p.m. Wednesday near the Weber Wildlife Federation gun range, north of Pineview Reservoir.

About 70 firefighters from Weber County and the state forest service worked the fire throughout Wednesday night, Curry said, and Thursday's cool, damp weather cooperated with crews, allowing them to directly attack the blaze. On Wednesday, the fire had quickly spread because of a dry mixture of fuel in the area consisting largely of grass and brush.

There are fire breaks near where the fire spread, implemented specifically because of the area's high fire danger, but Curry said they were ineffective at containing the fire.

"When the fire is driven by wind, it moves too fast for roads or fire breaks to stop it," he said.

The cause of the fire is still being investigated, Curry said. A smaller fire in June in the same area was caused by a stray gun round at the shooting range, and investigators believe Wednesday's fire could have been sparked in the same way, though they hadn't ruled out other possible causes.

"We're still looking into all the details," Curry said. "We can't just assume every fire that starts near a gun range was caused by gunfire."

Whatever the cause of the fire turns out to have been, Curry said, the fire should serve as a reminder to people that they must take every possible step to avoid fire danger.

"It's July now, and we had about no rain in July, which means it's dry," Curry said. "People can be prepared with an extinguisher and a shovel and everything to put out a fire, but when fires move fast, it quickly becomes beyond the capability of a couple people with an extinguisher."

The blaze is the latest in a string of wildfires that have popped up throughout the state in recent weeks. On Monday, a fire in Tremonton burned 1,100 acres before crews got it completely under control.

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