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Sam Penrod ReportingA fast moving brush fire scorched part of Dimple Dell Park in Sandy this afternoon and fire officials believe illegal fireworks are too blame.
Chief Don Chase, Sandy Fire Dept.: "It wasn't accidental, so we are trying to go from there, and eliminate possible causes. My guess now is that it is fireworks related."
Firefighters were close by and were able to keep the blaze from spreading out of control in the park. But they say this fire is more evidence of how a spark can be all it takes right now to start a devastating fire with grass and brush throughout Utah extremely dry.
Sandy firefighters quickly responded and kept the fire to a two-acre area. While lit, the flames were more than five feet high.
"It was burning very fast, about a 15 mile an hour wind coming through the park, so it moved the fire along very quickly."
The blaze could have threatened nearby homes close to Dimple Dell Park. Firefighters have already been trimming weeds near homes in the foothills to try to eliminate the fire danger and they are stepping up their response to all fire calls.
"We're pretty sensitive right now because it is a high fire danger, and high fire season. We actually double up the number of units we send on an initial alarm, so that we get in on it quick and try to get it out quickly."
Firefighters say the calls they get for grass fires are ten times worse after fireworks go on sale. And those who light illegal fireworks are typically the culprits of brush fires near homes.
"Most often our problems are from illegal fireworks and restrictions don't stop people from using illegal fireworks.”
Of course there are stiff fines for even possessing illegal fireworks and if fireworks start a fire, people can be held responsible for thousands of dollars in firefighting costs.