Fire sparked by shooting evacuates homes in Utah

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Associated Press

Posted on June 22, 2012 at 9:00 PM

SARATOGA SPRINGS, Utah (AP) — Residents of at least 1,500 homes in northern Utah are being evacuated after high winds kicked up a fire started by target shooters.

The roughly 4,000-acre blaze started Thursday near Saratoga Springs, about 40 miles south of Salt Lake City.

Fire officials are calling in additional aircraft and extra ground crews.

Bureau of Land Management officials say this is the 20th target-shooting related fire this year in Utah.

The Utah County sheriff says he's afraid the fire could take down the area's power grid, shutting off electricity to up to 7,000 homes.

A continued mix of hot, windy and extremely dry conditions has raised the fire danger across Utah and parts of Wyoming, Arizona, Nevada and Colorado.

At a wildfire burning on over 68,000 acres in northern Colorado, some homes are being evacuated because of several spot fires started by winds outside the main fire. The High Park Fire burning west of Fort Collins has now destroyed at least 191 homes. It's also blamed for the death of a woman whose body was found at her ranch.

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253-a-09-(Bill Hahnenberg, incident commander, High Park Fire, at news conference)-"we come out"-High Park Fire Incident Commander Bill Hahnenberg says fire crews are up against dangerous, dry, windy conditions. (22 Jun 2012)

<<CUT *253 (06/22/12)>> 00:09 "we come out"

254-a-11-(Bill Hahnenberg, incident commander, High Park Fire, at news conference)-"to protect structures"-High Park Fire Incident Commander Bill Hahnenberg says protecting fire crews is the priority. (22 Jun 2012)

<<CUT *254 (06/22/12)>> 00:11 "to protect structures"

256-a-13-(Justin Smith, sheriff, Larimar County, at news conference)-"ahead of it"-Larimar County Sheriff Justin Smith says another spot fire has made the firefighting effort even more difficult. (22 Jun 2012)

<<CUT *256 (06/22/12)>> 00:13 "ahead of it"

255-a-12-(Justin Smith, sheriff, Larimar County, at news conference)-"means in total"-Larimar County Sheriff Justin Smith says more locals have been asked to leave the fire area. (22 Jun 2012)

<<CUT *255 (06/22/12)>> 00:12 "means in total"

APPHOTO UTSAL101: Fire approaches homes near Saratoga Springs, Utah on Friday, June 22, 2012. About 1,000 homes are being evacuated after high winds kicked up a fire near a northern Utah dump. Fire officials were calling in additional aircraft to fight the fast-moving fire near Saratoga Springs and Eagle Mountain. At one point, the fire threatened an explosives factory. (AP Photo/The Deseret News, Jeffrey D. Allred) SALT LAKE TRIBUNE OUT; PROVO DAILY HERALD OUT; MAGS OUT (22 Jun 2012)

<<APPHOTO UTSAL101 (06/22/12)>>

APPHOTO UTSAL102: Emergency responders work on a wild land fire that is threatening homes in Saratoga Springs, Utah, Friday, June 22, 2012. About 1,000 homes are being evacuated after high winds kicked up a fire near a northern Utah dump. Fire officials were calling in additional aircraft to fight the fast-moving fire near Saratoga Springs and Eagle Mountain. At one point, the fire threatened an explosives factory. (AP Photo/The Deseret News, Jeffrey D. Allred) SALT LAKE TRIBUNE OUT; PROVO DAILY HERALD OUT; MAGS OUT (22 Jun 2012)

<<APPHOTO UTSAL102 (06/22/12)>>

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