Parleys Canyon reopens after fast-moving fire shuts down I-80, closures to resume at 9 a.m.
Wildfire estimated at 200 acres, evacuations ordered for Mt. Aire community
PARLEYS CANYON — A late afternoon wildfire forced the evacuation of dozens of homes and cabins in the Mt. Aire community as fire crews battled a blaze that shut down I-80 in both directions Thursday night and will close it again Friday morning.
The freeway was reopened around 9:30 p.m., but fire officials said it will be closed again, in both directions, at 9 a.m. Friday. It’s unknown how long the road will be closed.
Fire crews were alerted to the blaze around 6:12 p.m. as it began burning on the south side of I-80 at about 6300 East. It quickly spread, devouring at least 40 acres of wild land. By 8:30 p.m., fire officials announced on the Utah Fire Info Twitter account that the blaze was estimated to have surpassed 200 acres.
Fire officials shut down I-80 westbound at the Jeremy Ranch exit and eastbound I-80 at the mouth of Parleys Canyon. At the same time, homes in the Mt. Aire community, which is a mix of year-round homes and part-time cabins, were evacuated. Skyline High School was designated as the place for residents to go until the fire could be contained.
Fire crews were fighting the fast-moving wildfire by dropping fire retardant from the air, as well as water. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.