Rapidly growing fire forces more than 200 homes east of Spanish Fork to evacuate

Read the latest on the Ether Hollow Fire here.

Target shooting caused a second fire in two days in Utah County, threatening homes in an area east of Spanish Fork.

The Ether Hollow Fire started at around 6:20 p.m. Monday and quickly grew from 20 acres to 1,000 acres by 7:30 p.m. As of 9:50 p.m., authorities had evacuated about 200 homes. Fifteen of those residences are in Mapleton and many are up Hobble Creek Canyon in an area called Grindstone, according to a spokesperson with the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands. Parts of Springville were evacuated as well.

Maple Canyon and Whiting Campground were also evacuated, according to the Utah County sheriff.

An evacuation center was set up at Mapleton City Hall for anyone displaced by the fire. A second evacuation center was set up at 495 S. Canyon Road in Springville.

(Photo courtesy of Ryan Petersen) The Ether Hollow Fire burns east of Spanish Fork on Monday, Sept. 7, 2020.

About 80 firefighters were battling the blaze, but heavy winds grounded “nearly all” aerial firefighting efforts, according to Utah Fire Info. As with Sunday’s William Fire near Santaquin, which has grown to 2,000 acres and is only 5% contained, the cause of the blaze was targeting shooting.

“Two major fires in two days caused by target shooting. This is not the time to carelessly shoot into the wildlands folks,” Utah Fire Info tweeted. “This has to stop.”

This story will be updated.

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