UPDATE: South Canyon fire now 90 percent contained; both WB lanes expected to open
LAST UPDATED: 2:05 p.m.
The 113 Fire burning alongside Interstate 70 in South Canyon was considered to be 95 percent contained as of mid-afternoon Thursday, with a goal of 100 percent containment by day’s end, according to an afternoon update from the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office.
“Operations will continue for the next several days as hot spots, interior to the fire containment, are addressed and the fire is monitored,” according to the news release. “No highway or lane closures are anticipated at this time, but people passing the area should slow down and use extra caution to keep our ground personnel safe.”
Both lanes of westbound I-70 were expected to open to traffic by 4 p.m. today, but fire operations will continue in the area and equipment and firefighters will be present on the shoulder.
“During this time particularly, people are asked to drive at reduced speeds and not to stop to view the area,” the Sheriff’s Office advised. “There is really very little to see as mop up operations continue.”
Today’s efforts included 25 firefighters and equipment from various agencies. No further aerial drops of water were used and none are planned for today at this time.
While no containment was lost on a fire burning alongside Interstate 70 at mile marker 112 in South Canyon, the containment number has been revised from 95 percent reported Wednesday evening, to 70 percent Thursday morning, according to Glenwood Springs Fire Chief Gary Tillotson.
As of 7 a.m. Thursday, the containment number was revised to 70 percent with the fire covering 4.5 acres. Tillotson said that the 95 percent containment was an overestimation last evening, but the fire did not spread overnight.
Firefighters are expected to work on fire lines throughout the morning to fully contain the fire, while an investigator is scheduled to arrive Thursday morning to try to determine the cause of the fire, which sparked at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday along the westbound lanes of I-70.
As firefighters work to build fire line Thursday morning, the right lane and the shoulder on I-70 will be closed throughout the day to ensure the safety of emergency personnel working on the blaze. Tillotson stated that the goal is to have both westbound lanes on I-70 opened by 4 p.m.
At this time, there is no concern for Ami’s Acres or Mitchell Creek, which were placed on pre-evacuation Wednesday afternoon.
This story has been revised from an earlier version that was posted. It will be updated with more information as it becomes available.
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