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Specialized rehab team moves into Brian Head fire burn area

Firefighters work to put out hot spots on the massive Brianhead fire

BRIAN HEAD — A team of soil scientists, geologists, botanists and others are now working in the aftermath of the massive fire that has burned for nearly a month near Brian Head and Panguitch Lake .  The fire has blackened more than 71,000 acres and is expected to be brought under control within the next few days.

Julie Thomas, Spokeswoman for the Great Basin Incident Management Team 7, says some of the focus will be on rehabilitation.  She says a Burned Area Emergency Response team, or a BAER team, will be looking at ways to avoid other potential problems, such as debris flows or flooding.  “They’ll go out and look at the ground and say, ‘Okay, this is what we need to do,’ so we don’t have massive flooding and debris flows and that kind of thing,”  Thomas said.

“They’ll go out and look at the ground and say, ‘Okay, this is what we need to do,’ so we don’t have massive flooding and debris flows and that kind of thing,”  Thomas said.

Thomas says the fire will likely have lingering hot spots. “Until it snows, really, to be honest, the folks here will still see smoke coming from that fire,” Thomas said. But she said there’s a good perimeter around those hot spots.

“Until it snows, really, to be honest, the folks here will still see smoke coming from that fire,” Thomas said. But she said there’s a good perimeter around those hot spots.

The fire started on June 17th, allegedly by a homeowner who was using a torch to burn some weeds.