Car fire on I-15 sparks 22-acre wildfire, threatening church, businesses

ST. GEORGE — A vehicle fire on Interstate 15 ignited a 22-acre wildfire near Littlefield, Arizona, Tuesday afternoon. 

The Beaver Dam/Littlefield Fire District responded to reports that a gold Dodge Intrepid had caught fire on I-15 near mile marker 8, just south of Littlefield, around 1 p.m., Fire Chief Jeff Hunt said. 

The car had been traveling north on the interstate when it caught fire and was fully involved in flames when responders arrived. The Arizona Department of Public Safety is currently conducting an investigation into the cause of the vehicle fire. 

“The car was completely engulfed when I got my engine to it,” Hunt said. 

The vehicle fire was put out quickly, within 30 minutes, but the fire had already spread to nearby brush when crews arrived. 

A 22-acre wildfire caused by a vehicle fire on Interstate 15 near Littlefield, Arizona, July 30, 2019 | Photo courtesy of the Beaver Dam/Littlefield Fire District, St. George News

The Bureau of Land Management Arizona Strip District arrived to assist the Beaver Dam/Littlefield Fire District in containing the 22-acre fire, which threatened nearby homes, a church and businesses, including the 4 Seasons RV Park. 

Because of the fire’s proximity to the structures, a Moki helicopter responded from St. George to perform bucket drops of water, and two single-engine air tankers came from Mesquite to dump retardant on the fire. 

“That actually stopped the forward progression towards the 4 Seasons RV park and the LDS church,” Hunt said. “Probably stopped the fire within about an eighth of a mile, maybe a little bit more, of those two.” 

The fire has been contained, and firefighters were working to extinguish it completely as of Tuesday evening. 

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Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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