A huge fire broke out on Sunday at a gun range in Herriman, Utah. At 3:30 p.m, National Guard soldiers were training at Camp Williams when rounds fired off from a machine gun sparked a fire in some dry brush. When asked about the Herriman fire, Lt. Col. Hank McIntire from the National Guard said, “They knew immediately and they got on it right away, but soldiers did not have the manpower or equipment to stop it from rapidly spreading”. The fire spread fast with winds up to 35 mph, and now there’s an investigation going on to find out whether the National Guard was even supposed to be training that day with winds that high. Lt. Col. Hank McIntire says, “There are rules in place regarding what weather conditions must be present in order for that training to take place, with the wind with the way it is today conditions can change very quickly, so if a unit had the green light to train but the conditions changed, that’s what we’re trying to find out.”
Over 1,200 homes have been evacuated and 300 acres have burned, but there’s too much smoke in the air to know exactly how big the fire is. The Herriman fire is so bad, Mayor Josh Mills called for a State of Emergency. Blackhawk Helicopters flew into Herriman, Utah to drop buckets of water down on to the fire, and 120 National Guardsmen are in Salt Lake County helping out. Right before the fire reached some of the houses, one witness said, “We can see the flames at the top of the hill, I don’t want to take a chance. It’s really scary.” Salt Lake County Sheriff Lt. Don Hutson, who saw some of the houses catch on fire, said the whole thing was “chaos”.
See photos of the Herriman fire and news video. Photos of houses burning and video.
Herriman, Utah is giving emergency updates on the fire on twitter.