Central Utah blaze grows to 7,000 acres

Published: Monday, Sept. 6 2010 5:24 p.m. MDT

MANDERFIELD, Beaver County — A lightning fire sparked near Manderfield Reservoir at the end of July has grown to 7,000 acres, prompting road closures and campsite evacuations.

The Twitchell Canyon fire had grown to approximately 7,000 acres Monday, fueled by warm temperatures and high winds, said Terry Krasko, public information officer for the Ourada's Great Basin Type Two Incident Management Team. Though Krasko said cooler temperatures were expected Monday, a number of road and trail closures were implemented in the interest of protecting the public and the firefighters.

Fire crews will work to protect three threatened structures and various, small historic sites in the area. Some campgrounds also were evacuated over the Labor Day weekend.

"There were campers up and down all these canyons and we told them they had to move," Krasko said. "Public safety is priority number one. It's all precautionary and it's one of the unhappy things we have to do. … Here it is, Labor Day weekend and people want to have fun, but we've got a fire going."

Crews are working to secure all private property in the area, but Krasko warned that smoke should be expected in the areas of Richfield, Marysville and Beaver. Those who are sensitive to smoke are advised to stay out of the area.

The following road closures are also currently in effect:

 Forest Road 124 at the Poison Creek gate (just north of Big Johns)

 Forest Road 119 (Indian Creek Road) at Pole Creek Junction (Forest Road 589)

 Forest Road 583 at Shingle Creek Road (Forest Road 114)

 Forest Road 113 (Mill Creek Road) at Mud Flat Road (Forest Road 116)

 Forest Road 113 (Mill Creek/Beaver Creek Road) at the Forest Boundary on the east side

 Forest Road 475 (Dry Creek Trail) at the northern terminus

 Forest Road 476 at Sevier County Road 4

 Forest Road 474 (Deer Creek Road) at the eastern forest boundary

Krasko said the crews are currently focusing on the east and west sides of the fire and will make future decisions regarding closures as necessary.

e-mail: emorgan@desnews.com

Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam

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