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Did environmental policies ignite Utah's Brian Head wildfire?

Did environmental policies ignite Utah's Brian Head wildfire?

The Brian Head Fire in southern Utah has burned more 54,000 acres, an area bigger than the city of Washington, said CNN senior meteorologist Dave Hennen. Are there fires burning anywhere else? Yes.

CNN included the Brain Head Fire in its roundup on the "blistering hot spell" thats working its way through the western United States.

After surveying the largest fire in the nation at 78 square miles, Utah Republican State Representative Mike Noel from Kanab said the federal government needs to take the steps necessary to reduce damage from wildfires and to protect mountain homes.

"Those are very favorable conditions for spreading a fire", said National Weather Service lead forecaster Greg Martin.

By 4 p.m. local time (7 p.m. EDT), the fire spread to 125 acres and grew to 1,200 acres shortly after 6 p.m. local time (9 p.m. EDT), according to the department. The fire's 10 percent contained and has destroyed more than a dozen cabins and other structures.

On Monday, the wind was pushing flames in the direction of two mountain communities, Poppet Flats and Silent Valley, Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department Capt. Lucas Spelman said.

The Brian Head Fire started on June 17, at 12:20 PM.

Steve Bloch, legal director of the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance, said Noel's assertion is an over-simplification of wildfires that are the result of fire suppression, climate change, drought and unpredictable winds.

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A state lawmaker in Utah has blamed a raging wildfire on federal logging regulations and "bunny-loving" environmentalists, saying a spate of beetle infestations has only fueled a blaze that's forced the evacuation of almost 1,500 people.

The Brian Head Fire has already charred some 46,000 acres, and right now, it's only nine percent contained.

Five hundred firefighters were battling the blaze.

A number of communities in the area were forced to evacuate, including the entire town of Brian Head. "I've pulled out my family photos and important records and I know exactly what I have to grab if we have to leave", said Rice, who lives with her husband and her dog. Mayer is located about 70 miles north of Phoenix.

The dispatcher then asked the caller about the size of the fire, to which the owner replied: "It's a forest!"

Firefighters in Washington state were battling three fires near Wenatchee that had grown to about 37 square miles.

According to CBS Los Angeles, all residents were allowed to return home and 14 Freeway, which was closed by the fire, was reopened.

The fire began Saturday afternoon, and was reported to have blazed to 50 acres and as law enforcement agencies investigate, by human cause is a possible, but not definite factor in the cause of the fire.

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