Authorities investigate suspicious fire that threatened Provo homes

Posted at 9:46 PM, Sep 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-20 23:46:42-04

PROVO, Utah - A dozen homes were threatened by a suspicious brush fire in Provo Tuesday. In some cases flames came within a few feet of burning down houses.

Neighbors living along Foothill Drive could only watch as the flames ripped through the canyon below, toward multi-million dollar homes.

"We feel like we dodged a bullet here today," said Capt. Dean York with Provo City Fire Department.

Seventeen firefighters from Provo and Orem used their hoses to repel down the canyon and shoot water onto the flames, which consumed more than two acres.

"And to listen to the radio traffic, to hear them out of breath, I knew that they were working hard, this is a very steep hillside," York said.

Pat Kay could only stare at the black charcoal branches in her back yard, all that's left of what used to be a row of beautiful Bridal Veil plants.

"I could hear the bushes popping and fire shooting up there," Kay said.

Kay knew she had to evacuate but she also had to stay calm for her son who is confined to a wheelchair.

"It was scary, I thought if he panics and can't get up the ramp, and sometimes he does panic, but he was pretty good and he got right in the van for me," Kay said.

In some cases electric boxes and window moldings were melted. There was about $10,000 in total damage, according to York.

By late afternoon the fire was determined contained and residents were permitted to return.

"I think we're lucky, very lucky," Kay said.

The Provo Fire Department is still investigating the cause of the fire. They are calling it suspicious.