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Fires burn homes in three Utah cities

Published March 22, 2014 4:27 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Blazes in Provo, West Valley City and unincorporated Salt Lake County kept firefighters busy on Friday and Saturday.

A bad combination of children and matches ignited a fire Friday afternoon at 1257 N. 1270 West in Provo. Three young boys playing with matches set bushes on fire, which spread to an adjacent home. Provo fire marshal Lynn Schofield estimated the damage at $60,000.

Firefighters from three stations responded and extinguished the blaze in just over 20 minutes. There were no injuries.

The boys will be referred to the Provo Fire and Rescue Youth Fire Setter Intervention team for evaluation and education, Schofield said.

A 41-year-old West Valley City woman and her dog were rescued Friday night from a fire at Hidden Pointe Apartments, 3854 W. Rockwood Way, after a quick-acting fire crew responded within minutes.

"There were reports of a structure fire at 11:48 [p.m.]," said West Valley City Fire Department spokesman Chris Beichner. "The crew coming back to the station saw it pop up on the screen. That gave them an early jump and they got there fast. There were multiple units, with a woman leaning out of the window trapped inside."

Beichner said that within two minutes of the report, firefighters were able to set up ladders and help the woman down from the second story. During a search of the unit, they found an unconscious dog, which was treated by medics with oxygen therapy. The animal regained consciousness.

A man who lived in the complex and tried to fight the fire unsuccessfully with an extinguisher was treated at the scene and released.

The woman, whom officials did not identify Saturday morning, suffered smoke inhalation and minor burns to her hand.

The fire caused $50,000 in damage to the woman's apartment, 80 percent of which was destroyed. Beichner said another four families were displaced due to water damage.

A Saturday morning fire destroyed an abandoned home at 5894 S. Utah Highway 111 (about 7200 West).

According to Capt. Fitzgerald Petersen, of the Unified Fire Department, crews needed to stretch hoses several thousand feet across the highway to fight the blaze.

"The only hydrant was several thousand feet away," he said.

Jensen said the fire was whipped by strong wings in the area. The ceiling collapsed and the house was a total loss.

The captain said the cause of the fire was being investigated.