July 4 events nixed in Utah city after fire threatens homes

July 4, 2022 GMT

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A fire in a Utah city north of Salt Lake City suspected to have been caused by fireworks led to the evacuation of dozens of homes and the cancellation of some Independence Day events, officials said.

The fire near the city of Centerville was reported at about 11 p.m. Sunday and evacuation orders were issued for 89 homes.

It was lifted at 6 a.m. Monday, police said, and no homes were reported damaged. The fire burned about 100 acres (40 hectares), said Sierra Hellstrom, fire information officer, and was still burning on Monday.

An Independence Day parade and road race scheduled for Monday in Centerville were cancelled because there were not enough officers available to provide security for the events, police said.

Though the suspected cause of the fire works was fireworks, the cause has not been officially determined, Hellstrom said.

The National Weather Service issued a warning for high fire danger in much of Utah through Monday evening, as temperatures were predicted to rise into the low 90s Fahrenheit (33 Celsius) and wind gusts could reach 35 mph (56 kph).


“Though it is Independence Day, we urge you to avoid activities that may cause sparks! Any fires that develop will spread quickly!” the National Weather Service in Salt Lake City said in a social media post.

Much of the state is under extreme drought conditions, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.