Multiple fire agencies converge on ‘Spring Hollow Fire’

WASHINGTON COUNTY – Multiple agencies responded to a fire at a vineyard within the Dixie National Forest Thursday.

Firefighters from multiple agencies responded to the Spring Hollow Fire in the Dixie National Forest, Washington County, Utah, June 23, 2016 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News
Firefighters from multiple agencies responded to the Spring Hollow Fire in the Dixie National Forest, Washington County, Utah, June 23, 2016 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

Around 4 p.m., near the area of Spring Hollow, the St. George Fire Department responded to a growing fire at an vineyard just off Forest Service Road 31, also known as the Old Danish Road.

The St. George Fire units were soon joined by personnel from the Dammeron Valley and Diamond Valley fire departments, the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands, the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management.

The fire, named the ‘Spring Hollow Fire,’ appeared to be concentrated on the south side of the vineyard with smaller spot fires appearing in parts of the vineyard itself. While wildland firefighters worked to combat the fires, they were joined by single-engine aircraft dropping retardant on the blaze.

The majority of the blaze looked to be reduced to smoldering, charred ground and smoke by 6 p.m.

“Fire progression has stopped,” said Mike Melton, area fire management officer for the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands. “We’re cautiously optimistic that this isn’t going to spread anymore today.”

mgk-spring-hollow-fire-4
A single-engine aircraft dropping fire retardant on the Spring Hollow Fire in the Dixie National Forest, Washington County, Utah, June 23, 2016 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

The fire is around 9 1/2 acres in size and appears to be human-caused, yet under investigation, Melton said. One structure was threatened by the fire but is no longer at risk. No injures were reported in connection with the fire.

Wind is just one of the factors pegged for spreading the fire, Melton said, adding that the public needs to remember to be careful now that fire season is in full season.

“It’s just takes one spark, one heat source, and we’ve got ourselves a fire,” he said. “And in these conditions where it’s 105-plus degrees and relative humidity is extremely low, you throw in some wind, and it doesn’t take much to get a fire started and for it to spread rapidly.”

While firefighters dealt with fire, smoke from the Saddle Fire could be seen to the north. That fire has grown to 903 acres and remains at zero percent containment. Recreation areas around Pine Valley have been closed and a voluntary evacuation order has been issued for all of Pine Valley as of Thursday evening.

Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.

Email: mkessler@stgnews.com

Twitter: @MoriKessler

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

 

Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!

1 Comment

  • Ana June 24, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    We lost about 200 plants. There would have been more damage if it wasn’t for the Gt George fire department. Thank you for all your hard work.
    Marcus Zavala
    Chanela vineyards

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.