Rifle Wildfire over 5% contained

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RIFLE, Colo. (KKCO) — The wildfire burning near Rifle has grown to nearly 1,000 acres.

“We did determine that the fire was human caused, but we could not pinpoint the exact cause. It started right from the highway, so that could be a lot of different things,” said David Boyd, the public information officer for the Bureau of Land Management.

About 150 people are working from Highway 13 to the top of the Grand Hogback ridge, gaining 5 percent containment as of yesterday. Boyd says more should be contained today, despite stronger winds.

Now, three heavy helicopters are dumping water from the Harris Reservoir on the flames. The rugged terrain makes it hard for hand crews to access, though eight smoke jumpers were dropped in yesterday to secure the fire lines.

The fire started Wednesday, Oct. 3, and Boyd says its rapid spread shows that we are not out of the woods yet as far as fire danger goes.

“Here we are in October, and this is about as late as anyone out here has worked on fires out here, so it just really shows how dry we are right now and how when you get the right day, you can get a really big fire going,” said Boyd.

He encourages everyone to be very careful when dealing with fire.

There is no immediate threat to structures, though there are a few in the area. The highway stayed open.

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