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Crews Monitor Bannock Co. Fire

Several crews continue to monitor a fire in northeastern Bannock County near Fort Hall.

The fire quickly grew from 20 acres to about 430 acres and is spreading onto Fort Hall reservation land, Bannock County Sheriff Lorin Nielsen said. The fire is estimated to have burned 133 acres of BLM land, 82 acres of private land and 217 acres of rangeland on the Fort Hall Reservation, Fort Hall spokeswoman Laverne Beech said.

The fire is about 25 percent contained, incident command officer with the BLM Zac Brouillette said.

He said hand crews will focus today on the fire’s west side, where dozers were unable to secure the perimeter of the fire yesterday due to rugged terrain.

Two fire tankers were stationed at the scene overnight, Brouillette said. Monday, about 60 firefighters from various agencies battled the blaze. About half that number will be on scene Monday.

“The focus today will be on securing the perimeter of the fire and assessing rehabilitation and repair needs,” said Brouillette.

Yesterday’s firefighting efforts were greatly assisted by BLM air tanker drops and a dozer line around 95 percent of the fire’s perimeter.

Fire officials told reporter Brittany Borghi the fire started just after 1 p.m. Sunday because of lightning.

It is burning at the top of a hill off of 2 1/2 Mile Road. That road is closed so crews can attempt to control the blaze.

Borghi reports flames are visible from several miles away. There is a lot of juniper in the area providing fuel for the fire. It is burning in an area with difficult terrain.

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