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Firefighters battle to contain Saddle Butte Fire

UPDATE: 8:17 p.m. 9-2-19 Fire crews have released the cause of the Saddle Butte.

They say the cause was from Mylar balloons tangled in power lines causing an electric arc.

Those materials caught fire and fell to the ground and spread across dried grass below the power lines and poles.

Strong winds and steep slopes caused the fire to move quickly up the butte.

UPDATE: 11:40 a.m. 9-2-19 Firefighters say residents of the Saddle Butte area will not be allowed to return to their homes today. Some will be allowed to be shuttled to their home with firefighters to retrieve medications.

The Red Cross says it has the situation well in hand and needs no public assistance at this time.

The cause of the fire is still undetermined. Firefighters are concentrating on gaining full containment of the fire today.


Original Story:

Teton County, Wyoming emergency officials have ordered a partial fire restriction. The decision follows the second major fire threat in the immediate Jackson area within the past month.

The Saddle Butte subdivision was evacuated early Sunday afternoon and remained evacuated overnight.

If you have been evacuated and need assistance, you can contact Red Cross by calling 307-222-8272.

Fire crews will reassess the situation Monday morning.

Spring Creek Ranch/Resort, Amangani, and Pine Siskin Road residents should be in a “ready”position. Jackson Hole Fire EMS Chief Brady Hansen will meet with the Saddle Butte HOA at 11 a.m. to talk to homeowners about the continued evacuation.

“Even though it may look like the fire is out, there are still hot spots that can flare, especially in this type of weather conditions,” said Chief Hansen. “We want to make sure the area is 110 percent safe before we can open it back up to residents.”

Deer Creek Condos and Grand Design Building evacuations were lifted Sunday night.

Two hotshot crews were called into Jackson to help hold fire lines today. Three helicopters will begin bucket drops and continue through the day. Highway 89 will be temporarily closed for those flights.

About 80 men and women are involved in working the fire.

The partial fire restriction means that open fires are prohibited in unincorporated areas of Teton County until further notice.

Those fires permitted include campfires contained within an established fire ring and at an established campground and charcoal fires with enclosed grills. Use of home fire pits and bowls are permitted but must use a maximum 1/4 inch spark arrester.

Multiple agencies have been involved in fighting the fire.

Resources include nine engines, five brush trucks, three helicopters, four fixed wing aircraft and two ambulances. The Interagency effort includes assistance from Bridger-Teton National Forest, Grand Teton National Park, National Elk Refuge, Teton County Sheriff’s Office, Town of Jackson Public Works, Town of Jackson Police Department, Teton County Sheriff’s Office Dispatch, Teton County Emergency Management, Teton County Idaho Fire/Rescue, Jackson Hole Security, Teton Village Fire Department and CERT (Community Emergency Response Team).

At this time, no structures have been lost and no injuries have been reported.

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