Fast-moving brush fire near Veyo grows to 400 acres as crews battle flames

ST. GEORGE — A fast-moving wildfire has burned more than 400 acres, crossing the cinder cone many locals refer to as the “Veyo Volcano,” and continuing to spread near state Route 18 near Veyo Sunday evening.

Firefighters arrive to battle flames near state Route 18 as brush fire spreads to more than 400 acres near Veyo, Washington County, Utah, Sept. 27, 2020 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

The fire ignited shortly after 6 p.m., and plumes of smoke could be seen rising north of St. George as crews were dispatched to the blaze burning near Lower Sand Cove Road west of Dammeron Valley.

Crews arrived and began an aggressive attack on the blaze as it headed south toward the Veyo Volcano and burned the hillside along SR-18 near mile marker 20. The blaze then spread west toward Upper Sand Cove Road, prompting authorities to close the road. Old Highway 91 remains open. The fire has continued to spread into the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve.

Washington County Fire Warden Adam Heyder told St. George News at the scene that bulldozers were brought in to cut a fire line and were soon joined by air support that helped to stop the spread of the blaze until it became too dark to fly safely.

Map depicting location of Veyo Volcano fire burn area, Sep. 27, 2020 | Photo courtesy of Google Maps, St. George News

While no evacuations have been ordered as of 9 p.m., Heyder warned that evacuations will likely be ordered if the fire spreads across Upper Sand Cove Road north of Dammeron.

Heyder also said that as of 8 p.m. Sunday, the fire has spread to more than 400 acres, a situation made worse due to high winds.

Multiple agencies remain on scene to fighting the blaze to keep it from spreading to any structures. These agencies include the U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, Department of Natural Resources, Hurricane Valley Fire, Dammeron Fire and the Santa Clara Fire Department. There are 15 engines, bulldozers and other equipment assigned to the fire.

Updated Oct. 7, 3 p.m.: There were five fire departments that battled the blaze that were not mentioned in the original story, including the Veyo Fire Department, Brookside Fire, the Central Fire Department, Dammeron Valley Fire and Rescue and the Gunlock Fire Department.

No injuries have been reported. The cause of the is under investigation.

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

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2020, 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!