ST. GEORGE — A large wildfire is burning on Pine Valley Mountain, sending billows of smoke in the air that can be seen from Cedar City to St. George.
This LIVE post is closed. For more recent information, click the following: Fire on Pine Valley Mountain changes directions but still zero percent contained
Update June 28, 9:45 p.m. Ten homes on private land near the Mill Flat Trailhead are now threatened by the fire. Officials are “in place doing structure assessments,” according to the Utah Fire Info Twitter page, which is being updated by fire information officer Nick Howell. More critical weather conditions are being forecast for Thursday.
The fire, which is being dubbed “West Valley Fire,” has been mapped at being 2,000 acres and is zero percent contained. One acre is about the same size as a football field.
According to a press release, “dry vegetation and windy conditions continue to drive the fire north in the Pine Valley Wilderness Area.”
The response to the fire includes eight fire engines, six hand crews, and 13 firefighting planes or helicopters. An additional five hand crews were ordered to help with the response.
The fire was first reported at about 3 p.m. Wednesday to be burning an area at least 100 acres large, Howell said. The fire is 1 mile east of Gardner Peak and 3 miles northeast of Pine Valley Mountain.
“We currently have aircraft and multiple resources from Color Country Interagency Fire en route,” Howell said at 5 p.m. “At the time, the fire was estimated to be about 100 acres, but it is active and it is moving, so that could change.”
There are no evacuations being performed so far, and the cause of the fire is still being investigated.
Michelle Wilson, a resident of Pine Valley, said she could see flames from her home and the smoke was “frightening.” She said she isn’t yet concerned about the fire threatening her home because the majority of it is on the other side of the mountain from Pine Valley.
“Every few minutes, I can see flames when a big ponderosa (pine tree) goes up from my top upstairs bedroom window,” Wilson said. “This is a nightmare.”
The Pine Valley Fire Department sent Wilson and her neighbors a message on the phone that there are no structures in Pine Valley threatened, she said.
Wilson said there are often many campers in that area of Pine Valley Mountain that have campfires.
This is a developing story.
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