Environment & Public Lands
Mon June 17, 2013
Wildfires Continue to Burn in Eastern Utah
Firefighters are still trying to contain three fires started in south eastern Utah last week. The Rock Creek Fire near Price, the Lackey Fan Fire near La Sal and the Dark Canyon Fire west of Monticello all began when a storm rolled through southeast Utah late last week.The Lackey Fan Fire is the biggest of the three having already burned about 900 acres with a crew of over 300 firefighters battling the blaze. The fire is currently burning in the opposite direction of La Sal and crews aren’t planning evacuations at this time. Jason Johnson is the information officer for the Rock Creek Fire. He says everyone should be cautious in the summertime with their own fires, fireworks and flammable materials.
“A lot of our fires start from lightning this time of year but it helps if we don’t have the other ones that are started on accident by people,” he says.
Wildfires burn dry timber and shrubs, but Johnson says litter also contributes to the fuels these fires consume.
“We are in a long-term drought and fuels are dry and they’re receptive so we’d ask people to be careful with fire and be conscious of that,” he says.
Still, fire officials say this summer’s fire season shouldn’t be as bad as last year’s, when wildfires burned almost half a million acres of land in Utah.