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Suspicious fires light up Provo hills

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Posted at 7:35 PM, Jun 30, 2014
and last updated 2014-06-30 21:35:15-04

PROVO, Utah -- Provo firefighters had their hands full over the weekend after six fires ignited in various parts of the city.

A fire on the east bench knocked out power for several hours and multiple fires along the Provo River Trail came dangerously close to homes.

"We have houses all along the river trail all the way down to Utah Lake, the harbor park area, that's where a lot of the calls came from when neighbors said, 'hey I have a fire in my backyard.’ There is a chain link fence that separates those homes from, but that doesn't mean a fire can't come through a chain link fence," said Capt. Dean York with Provo Fire Department.

Witnesses told firefighters they saw teenagers start the fires and run away.

"Lots of kids think it's kind of funny to try to light the cotton on fire. In the later evening teenagers will run along and try to light the cotton on fire," said Provo resident Amanda Bichsel.

Fire investigators say they have a lead on the case, and don't believe the fires were the work of the Provo arsonist who lit several abandoned buildings on fire.

Another blaze sparked in the foothills Sunday when a high tension wire snapped.

"We heard a sound and a flash and we went outside and saw on the Mountain it was all lit up in a fire," said Provo resident Amanda Egbert.

The power line malfunction caused 4,500 homes to lose power for several hours.

Officials warn people to keep an eye on their kids and communities as Independence Day approaches.