Fire causes brief shut down of two oil wells


The Bitterbrush Fire near Maybell is fully contained, but the effects of the fire are still being felt, as workers from Yampa Valley Electric Association plan to repair burned power poles.

Spokesman Jim Chappell with YVEA said the fire burned 16 power poles, and crews are expected to start work on replacing those poles Tuesday.

Chappell said the area is sandy, so crews are taking a bulldozer to the site.

The fire started Tuesday afternoon from a lightning strike and burned 2,207 acres before being listed as contained by the Bureau of Land Management at noon Wednesday.

The fire came within one mile of Maybell, but no buildings were lost and no injuries were reported.

The fire tripped a breaker on the power grid, shutting down two oil wells operated by Merit Energy Company at the Trelevan well site, Chappell said.

No reports were made about the power outage, but crews checking the area after the fire found blown fuses.

The electric company made some minor repairs and got the line back in service.

Chappell said he expects the work to begin at "first light" Tuesday.

Members of the Maybell Volunteer Fire Department, BLM, National Park Service from Dinosaur National Monument and Moffat County Sheriff's Office were involved in containing the fire.

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