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Wildfire caused by target shooting forces evacuations near Pineview Reservoir, Snowbasin Resort

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Posted at 5:28 PM, Jul 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-27 20:16:50-04

WEBER COUNTY, Utah — Homes were evacuated Saturday as crews responded to a wildfire between Snowbasin Resort and Pineview Reservoir.

The blaze, which officials have dubbed the Art Nord Fire, was first reported around 4:25 p.m. near 5200 Snowbasin Road in Huntsville.

At the latest update Tuesday afternoon, the fire was estimated at 46 acres and 85 percent contained.

Investigators have determined that it was caused by target shooting. They say a ricochet sparked the fire, and the shooter called 911 and stayed on the scene to cooperate with investigators.

Weber County Sheriff's Office deputies evacuated homes in the area that were threatened by the fire. It is expected that residents will be allowed to return to their homes at 10 p.m.

The portion of Ogden Canyon Road (SR-39) that runs along the south side of Pineview Reservoir was closed around 6:30 p.m. but has since been reopened. Snowbasin Road was also temporarily closed at Trappers Loop Road but was back open later in the evening.

Officials said Saturday that Snowbasin Road will remain closed at Basin View Road, which appears to be a private road with a handful of homes.

Several air tankers were called in to help crews on the ground.

"Target shooting in Utah is not allowed within 600 feet from structures," a press release from the U.S. Forest Service said. "This is a great example of how easily a spark can start a small fire and grow rapidly to threaten homes along with recreational opportunities due to our dry conditions. If you cause a wildfire by leaving an abandoned campfire, dragging chains or target shooting, you can be held responsible for the suppression cost."