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700 Acre Blaze Highlights Fire Danger

(Justin Sullivan/Getty)

A 700 acre grass fire that threatened homes and ranches in the Old Yellowstone Road area of Laramie County Saturday shows how serious the fire danger in the county is right now, according to Laramie County Fire District 2 spokesman Lew Simpson.

He says the fire was reported around 10:30 Saturday morning, starting in the median between the northbound and southbound lanes of Interstate 25. Simpson says that when firefighters arrived on the scene they found the fire had jumped the northbound lane and was spreading rapidly, being driven in different directions by shifting winds.

Simpson says firefighters from several different agencies were called to the scene, battling heavy smoke and high temperatures as they tried to head off the blaze before it entered a ravine leading to several homes and ranches. A helicopter was also called in, but Simpson says firefighters were able to secure a line around the fire and stop it’s advance. While no structures were damaged and no one was injured, Simpson says the fire could have been much worse and shows how quickly a fire can spread under the current hot, dry conditions, especially when strong winds are also present. The cause of Saturday’s fire remains under investigation.

Simpson reminds Laramie County residents that a partial fire ban is in effect, and that fireworks are prohibited from being shot off, except in a designated fireworks area which will open on June 30th just east of exit 7 off of I-25. He is also urging anyone who thinks they may see a fire to call 9-1-1 and report it immediately.

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