CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — The Latest on wildfires burning in the Western United States (all times local):
Strong winds are keeping a highway that accesses Wyoming’s Jackson Hole region and Yellowstone National Park closed Wednesday.
Fire spokeswoman Ronda Bishop says there was concern that the fire burning about 25 miles southeast of Jackson could burn back across U.S. 191/189.
The highway is heavily used by travelers heading across Interstate 80 to visit Jackson Hole and Yellowstone. However, there are several alternate routes available to travelers along I-80 that also lead to the region.
Jeff Golightly, of the Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce, says there hasn’t been an extraordinary interruption in tourism to Jackson.
Golightly said local residents who work in the Bondurant area are the most affected by the highway closure because their daily commutes have been interrupted.
Message signs along I-80 warn motorists to take one of several other alternate routes that lead to the region.
Officials say a wildfire threatening housing developments just south of Alaska’s largest city was likely set by accident or was arson.
Fire incident commander Tom Kurth said Wednesday the fire came within a mile of two Anchorage subdivisions.
He says there are no immediate plans for evacuations but warns residents near the fires to be ready to leave their homes quickly.
Authorities did not say why they believe the fire was set by a person or people either accidentally or in an act of arson. The area is used heavily for outdoor recreation.
Officials say about half a square mile spruce trees were burning or had burned.
Kurth says 150 firefighters are trying to put the fire out. Crews are expected to arrive Thursday from California and Oregon to help.
Utah authorities are investigating whether a brush fire that destroyed at least 10 mobile homes was intentionally set.
The 30-acre fire in the northern Utah city of Tooele ripped through a trailer park overnight after high winds pushed it out of a field and into a neighborhood.
Tooele fire and police officials said Wednesday that the blaze appeared suspicious and investigators were trying to determine if it was arson.
The fire has been contained but has displaced several dozen people. Eight other homes and a handful of cars were damaged.
Three firefighters and one resident were treated for smoke inhalation, but no other injuries were reported.
New wildfires have broken out in national forests in western Wyoming as crews battle a blaze blocking a route to Yellowstone National Park during peak tourist season.
The new fires were discovered Tuesday in remote areas of the Bighorn and Shoshone national forests.
A larger blaze has burned about 12 square miles in the Bridger-Teton National Forest and closed U.S. 191/189, a highway heavily used by travelers heading across Interstate 80 to visit Jackson Hole and Yellowstone.
There are alternate routes available to travelers heading to northwest Wyoming, including I-25 through Casper. The fire is burning about 5 miles north of the community of Bondurant.
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