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Wind fans the flames of Utah fire that has burned 13 homes

28 June 2017

The Utah fire began near the ski resort town of Brian Head, which is known as a weekend getaway destination for Las Vegas residents.

Officials couldn't immediately say how many homes or people are affected by the evacuation order. Firefighters in Idaho battled five lightning-sparked wildfires burning in grass and brush.

In Arizona, the Department of Forestry and Fire Management said in a statement that the Goodwin Fire, which started about 14 miles south of Prescott on Saturday, had burned almost 4,400 acres of land in the Bradshaw Ranger District of the Prescott National Forest.

Hundreds of firefighters have been battling the wildfire, facing 100-foot flames along with very dry conditions and winds that have been gusting up to 30 miles per hour, leaving a "high potential" for "extreme" fire behavior, officials said late Monday.

About 175 people were briefly allowed back to their homes near Panguitch Lake Sunday under escort, said Denise Dastrup with the Garfield County Sheriff's Office.

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"I hope that you recognize the sacrifice and the expertise that these firefighters bring", said Vickers.

The Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance said the statements were misleading, and countered in a prepared statment that climate change, drought, human activity and wind all play roles. "This thing has been a beast".

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Insisting that logging could have cleaned up dead, bug-infested trees that are fueling a Utah wildfire, a Republican state lawmaker blamed federal mismanagement and lawsuits by "tree hugger" environmentalists for the blaze that has burned 13 homes and forced the evacuation of 1,500 people.

The fire is the largest in the nation at 78 square miles (201 square kilometers).

Teams were expected to try to strengthen the containment line Wednesday on the rocky, wooded south end of the fire despite lava fields there, authorities reported.

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More than 900 personnel are battling the fire, which started June 7.

Two people were hospitalized in the solo-vehicle crash and subsequent auto fire that caused the wildfire on Monday afternoon.

Nara Visa Fire Chief Gary Girard told The Eastern New Mexico News that John Cammack was severely burned after falling from a fire engine when the winds shifted and the flames changed direction.

Firefighters also responded to other smaller fires across the region. Another drone was spotted on Sunday, and it, too, halted aerial firefighting efforts.

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