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For the week of Sept. 8, 1999 through Sept. 14, 1999

Brush fire spares Woodside houses

Express Staff Writer

s8fire1.jpg (8104 bytes)Light winds and quick action from local and federal fire fighting teams kept a brush fire near South Woodside from burning any houses Thursday night.

According to Wood River Fire and Rescue Chief Bart Lassman, the fire began shortly before 6:45 p.m. Lassman said the fire appears to have been started by people, but that its exact cause is still under investigation.

Lassman said flames up to 15 feet high swept up the sage-covered hillside and burned about 40 acres before being contained about 8:30 p.m.

Lassman said about 34 firefighters from Wood River Fire and Rescue, the Hailey Fire Department and the Bellevue Fire Department were assisted in the suppression effort by 60 firefighters from the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management. He said the federal agencies also supplied two helicopters and one retardant-dropping plane.

Lassman said the local departments first arrayed six engines and a water tender along houses near the intersection of Shenandoah Drive and Berry Creek Drive, where the fire began.

"We were getting some down-canyon winds that were blowing the fire back downhill and threatening some structures there," Lassman said.

He said residents helped by watering down their roofs and lawns with hoses.

Lassman said firefighters then flanked the blaze and began to extinguish it. He said local firefighters left the scene about 10:30 p.m., but that the Forest Service and BLM people spent the night at Wood River High School and returned early the next morning to mop up hot spots. He said the fire was extinguished by about noon Friday.


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