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Courtesy: Miranda McGraw

Ogden Canyon fire burns through 35 acres, believed to be human-caused

By Sean Walker, KSL.com | Updated - May 31, 2020 at 8:56 p.m. | Posted - May 30, 2020 at 11:56 p.m.



OGDEN — The fire near the mouth of Ogden Canyon, which officials were calling the 9th Street Fire, burned 35 acres Sunday before fire crews contained the blaze.

Utah Fire Info reported the blaze, which they say was human-caused, was 100% contained around 7 p.m. MDT, just under 24 hours after crews discovered the overnight fire near Maxfield Drive in Ogden. The initial half-acre blaze was aided by high winds and dry weather over the past month to fuel the wildfire, according to Weber Fire Chief Mike Mathieu.

All resources have been released, according to Utah Fire Info, after a day-long battle with high winds and soaring temperatures in abnormally dry conditions. Firefighters struggled to contain the blaze that nearly amassed 40 acres at one point, according to the Weber Fire Department. Crews were put in "monitor and patrol" status, the agency said.

"It's been a difficult fire to fight," Mathieu said.

While the exact cause of the fire is currently under investigation, state fire officials said Sunday they believe the blaze was human-caused.

The fire initially damaged a Rocky Mountain Power substation and several transmission lines in the area, causing a power outage that was restored around 2 a.m. MDT, according to a Rocky Mountain Power spokesperson. In addition, as many as 72 structures were threatened, Utah Fire Info reported early Sunday morning.

The blaze was around 15-20 acres Sunday morning when crews began working on it, but officials notes high winds that workers were battling could spread it further.

Officials at Utah Fire Info said 10 engines and one crew were assigned to the blaze, and efforts increasingly focused on saving homes located close to the north corner of the blaze, Matheiu said.

No mandatory evacuations took place.

Weber Fire reported that as many as seven units, including the fire warden, were using a back-burning technique to fight the flames. The agency described the technique as one used in controlled burning, where small fires are started in front of the main fire front, reducing the amount of fuel available to the main front by the time it reaches the area.

Mathieu said multiple agencies, including from the state and county, were responding to the fire, with around 50 personnel in the hills above Ogden since early Sunday morning.

Multiple witnesses to the fire reported seeing a bright flash of light shortly after 11:30 p.m., which a Rocky Mountain Power spokesperson said likely came from fallen high-voltage transmission lines coming close together because of the fire.

In addition to fire officials, Rocky Mountain Power is also investigating the cause of the fire.

Contributing: Graham Dudley, KSL.com

Sean Walker

KSL Weather Forecast