PANACA, Nev. — Firefighters continue to battle a large wildfire on the state line between Nevada and Utah, approximately 30 miles north of Mesquite and 25 miles southeast of Caliente.
The blaze, officially named the Dodge Springs Fire, reportedly started Thursday afternoon about 2:45 p.m. PDT. It burned more than 1,000 acres the first day, consuming pinyon pine, juniper trees, brush and grass. It is not threatening any structures or private property, according to officials.
As of 8 p.m. Friday, the fire had grown to an estimated 6,000 acres with containment at 5%, according to official information posted on InciWeb by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s district office in Ely, Nevada.
Smoke from the fire has been visible throughout Washington and Iron counties in Southern Utah, causing hazy air conditions and colorful sunsets.
Approximately 150 firefighters have been assigned to the fire as of Friday evening, according to the information on the website.
Chris Hanefeld, spokesman for the BLM Ely District office, said the blaze is believed to have been started by lightning.
Current ground resources battling the Type 3 Incident fire include the Nevada Task Force, consisting of six engines and a bulldozer; four additional engines, a bulldozer and four water tenders. Hand crews consist of one Type 1 hand crew (Cedar City), two Type 2 Initial Attack hand crews (Vegas Valley Veterans and Slide Mountain) and a Type 2 hand crew (Nevada Division of Forestry). In addition, a Type 2 Initial Attack hand crew (Zephyr Fire Crew) has been ordered.
Aerial resources Friday consisted of two heavy air tankers, four Single Engine Air Tankers (SEATs) and a Helitack. An Air Attack plane is circling overhead to coordinate aerial and ground resources.
Assisting the BLM’s Ely District are the Nevada Division of Forestry, BLM Arizona Strip District, U.S. Forest Service and private contractors.
According to InciWeb, the fire has been making significant runs to the north and east as it moves into heavier fuels and into the Docs Pass Wilderness area. There are virtually no accessible roads in the area, nor are there any breaks in fuel type for many miles.
Authorities plan to continue to construct fire lines with crews and bulldozers while air resources provide support.
The InciWeb site indicates that afternoon rainstorms bringing monsoonal moisture are forecast to increase over the weekend and into the first part of next week. The fire isn’t expected to be fully contained for at least another week, with the website listing a projected containment date of Aug. 1.
Cedar City News reporter ALYSHA LUNDGREN contributed to this report.
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