UPDATED: Fire caused by exploding transformer near SR-18 100% contained

ST. GEORGE — Smoke rose into the sky Sunday morning after a wildfire ignited near the south Red Butte Substation about a mile west of Central.

Firefighters work to extinguish the Central Fire, Central, Utah, Aug. 16, 2020 | Photo courtesy of the Dammeron Valley Fire Special Service, St. George News

At approximately 7:25 a.m. Sunday morning, a fire now known as the Central Fire was reported burning uphill through grass, brush and juniper trees near mile marker 27 off state Route 18 by the Red Butte Substation.

Washington County Fire Warden Adam Heyder told St. George News at 9:45 a.m., the fire had grown to 10 acres and was 5% contained. There are 20 fire engines, a 1T3 helicopter, two single-engine air tankers (SEATS) and Air Tactical on scene.

After an on-site investigation, the fire was determined to have been caused by an exploding transformer at the Red Butte Substation, Heyder said. No injuries or road closures have been reported at this time.

At 11:24 a.m., Heyder said the fire was at nine acres with a dozer line around it. Firefighters are continuing to work on containment and starting mop-up operations.

An excessive heat warning has been issued for much of Utah, with temperatures expected to reach 112 degrees in St. George and 100 degrees in Central.

The fire was 100% contained by 5 p.m., Heyder said. Engines are on scene and will be mopping up until dark.

Updated Aug. 16, 5:34 to reflect fire being contained.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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