Fast-Growing 1,000-Acre Brush Fire Closes Road To Young

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Forest Service crews and air tankers struggled Friday morning to contain a 1,000-acre brush fire six miles north of Young.

The fire yesterday forced the closure of Forest Road 512, frustrating many Young residents trying to reach their homes.

The fire has “high” potential for growth and has tripled in size overnight.

It started on Thursday afternoon from undisclosed causes.

The Forest Service has already committed three Hotshot crews, two other crews, seven engines, one bulldozer, three single engine air tankers and one DC-10, which is classified as a “very large” air tanker.

The fire continues to grow in steep terrain in a ponderosa pine forest with a thick understory of brush and grass.

The Forest Service on Friday called in additional crews and tankers, hoping to contain the fire before the hot, dry, windy conditions forecast for the weekend send it flaming out of control.

Elsewhere in Arizona the 481 Grand Fire near the Grand Canyon is 70 percent contained and the 2,860-acre 257 Fire burning four miles southeast of Superior is 75 percent contained.

As a result of fire conditions considered “extreme,” the Tonto National Forest has banned almost all fire-related activities anywhere in the forest, except in certain developed campgrounds.

Payson followed suit this week by banning all open fires, charcoal fires, firecrackers and other fire-related activities in town.

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