Fire ban still in effect; rural blaze Tuesday proves risksSep 7, 2017 By Katie Roenigk, Staff Writer
Despite cooling temperatures and shorter days, a fire ban remain in effect in Fremont County, officials said this week.
"Unless we start getting moisture ... I have no thoughts right now of removing (the ban)," Fremont County Fire Protection District chief Craig Haslam said Thursday.
"I know some people don't like that, (but) fuels are still dry and flammable. It's not a good situation out there now. Fires take off, and they can run pretty quickly."
Firefighters responded to just such a fire at about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday on David's Way west of Riverton. The incident is under investigation, but Haslam said it appears the blaze began in a garbage can that had been used to burn refuse.
"They thought it was out," he said.
Despite a lack of wind, he said somehow the flames jumped from the can to the ground, spreading to cover about an acre of land.
The blaze destroyed a motor home and an out building, Haslam said, and it threatened additional structures in the area. About 20 firefighters and eight pieces of equipment responded from multiple fire departments to protect the property.
"We had a good response," Haslam said. "Fortunately nobody was hurt, and no permanent structures were damaged."
Crews remained on scene for a couple of hours, he said.
Fire ban rules allow for trash and refuse to be burned between 6 p.m. and 8 a.m. inside containers equipped with spark arresters. Haslam said the container must be located in a cleared area with at least a 10 foot radius.
During the day, Haslam said people should refrain from burning.
"That sun comes out and starts drying (fuels) out," he said. "The fire will spread."