Fire threatens Utah power stationgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread
Fire threatens power station Ogden Canyon blaze also came close to homes
Friday, June 30, 2000
OGDEN -- Firefighters quickly extinguished a small grass fire at the mouth of Ogden Canyon Thursday afternoon that burned several acres of dry brush, briefly threatened nearby homes and could have caused widespread power outages.
The fire started near the Utah Power El Monte substation about 3 p.m. and caught several wooden power poles on fire.
The cause was not known, but a Utah Power spokeswoman, Margaret Kesler, said it did not cause any power outages. She said company employees were staying on the scene through the evening to make sure there was no further danger.
Several wooden poles carrying power to the northern part of the state burned briefly, but were extinguished.
In addition, Ogden Fire Capt. Ralph Orton said the smoke from the fire could have ionized the air around the overhead high power lines, causing them to arc.
The fire started next to the station and traveled west through a field of dry grass and sage brush towards homes on the ridge above.
The home closest to the fire is owned by Art Lane, 1713 E. 1350 South.
While Lane sprayed a pile of dry lumber next to his garage with a garden hose, a neighbor used another garden hose to wet down sage brush and dry grass around the home.
Michelle Wilkinson said she knew the hose probably wouldn't do a lot of good if the fire actually got that close, adding "but this is my back yard, too."
State fire officials have issued a Stage One fire alert for the entire state, saying dry weather conditions have created extreme fire danger.
Kesler said there was a short power outage in Ogden Thursday afternoon, but it was unrelated to the fire.
She said the outage was to customers between 32nd and 42nd streets west of Washington Boulevard in Ogden. It lasted from 2:51 p.m. to 3:23 p.m.
That outage was caused when a piece of wire on a passing truck was flipped onto a 46,000 volt line at the Lincoln Avenue substation near 31st Street.
-- Martin Thompson (firstname.lastname@example.org), June 30, 2000