New fire near Enterprise, area fires at various levels of containment

The charred area is what remains of the Atchinson Fire, Aug. 8, 2012 | Photo courtesy of Mike Melton, Atchinson Fire Air Attack, Bureau of Land Management

SOUTHERN UTAH – A new fire near Enterprise has sparked to life and has claimed 60 acres so far. Near Central, the Atchinson Fire is now 85 percent contained and is holding at 51 acres. The 2,450-acre West Mountain Fire nears full containment at 95 percent Wednesday evening.

Pyramid 2 Fire

A lightning hold-over fire approximately 1.5 miles northwest of Enterprise flared to life on Wednesday.  The fire grew rapidly and then received rain, aiding firefighters in containing a portion of the fire.

No structures are threatened and no roads are closed

Nick Howell, of the Bureau of Land Management, explained that a “lightning hold-over fire” takes place when an area is struck by lightning but does not immediately ignite. Instead, it smolders for a time, maintaining a “pocket of heat” until conditions are right, leading to the pocket igniting into a wildfire.

He said lightning hold-over fires are fairly common during the monsoonal months, and generally go unnoticed until they are big enough to be seen from passing aircraft. Some hold-over fires can take as long as eight days to flare-up after the initial lightning strike.

The Pyramid 2 Fire is currently 50 percent contained and stand at 60 acres.

Resources on the fire include 25 individuals attached to three fire engines, one squad, and one Type III helicopter.

Atchinson Fire 

Aly Forrow, the information officer for the Atchinson Fire, said a Type IV Incident Commander had taken the lead on the fire. The fire has received a good amount of rain this afternoon, holding the fire to 51 acres in size.  The IC determined the fire was holding strong, and released some resources to other incidents.

Started by lightning on Aug. 7, the Atchinson Fire is approximately two miles east of Central. So far no structures are threatened and no closures are currently in place.

A little smoke may be visible from the surrounding area and possibly state Route 18.

Resources on hand include three fire engines and one hand crew.

The fire is currently 85 percent contained as of 11 a.m. Thursday.

The West Mountain Fire 

Firefighters are working to access the remaining fire perimeter to meet full containment objectives.  No structures are threatened and no closures are currently in place.

Located on the west side of West Mountain, near Utah Hill, the fire has reached 95 percent containment and holds at 2,450 acres.

Recourses include one hand crew, two squads, one air attack platform and various overhead. Up to 35 personnel remain assigned to the fire.

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Twitter: @MoriKessler

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2012, all rights reserved.

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