Crews continue to battle Elgin Bridge Fire

KOLD News 5-5:30 p.m. recurring
Published: May. 24, 2022 at 9:06 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Families living near the Elgin Bridge Fire are back at home. Evacuations were lifted Tuesday morning for folks who live east of Elgin, along Mustang Ranch Road.

The fire has grown to 4,000 acres and is not contained.

Fire crews said the fire started around 10:30 a.m. Monday morning.

It charred acres of land and which began near Upper Elgin Road.

The fire worked its way towards Mustang Mountain as crews battle the flames.

The cause of the fire is under investigation and Arizona State Forestry said the fire has been fueled by winds and pockets of dry vegetation.

“There’s a lot of grass and grass burns very fast down here as you have seen these past couple weeks,” said Forestry spokesman Corey Guerin.

The fire made a push to the east, but firefighters were able to safely and directly engage it to keep it from coming off Mustang Mountain.

“It is kind of going down the hill, right behind that mountain and just working its way down that hill,” he said.

Guerin said if the fire decides to keep burning in that direction, there are no communities in that path.

Wednesday, crews are establishing a containment line at the head of the fire. This keeps the fire south of State Route 82 and out of the Rain Valley community.

“They kept it off the buildings. They are just amazing. If it was not for them, we would all be charcoal by now,” said Elgin resident David Whitaker.

Whitaker moved to the Elgin area from Maine three years ago. He said he has seen a fire or two.

“Actually, four fires. The two fires on Vaughn Loop road were close to us as well. The San Rafael was basically in our backyard, and we had to evacuate the horses.”

Now, the Elgin Bridge Fire.

“We were not in any danger, but it was in our backyard,” he said.

He said his 18 acres have not been touched and gives praise and thanks to the fire crews.

“It was nerve racking when we had to evacuate for the San Rafael Fire, but they are so good at what they do that it gives you a false sense of security they are that good. Kuddos to those guys,” he said.

Fire crews said wildfires have a mind of its own and wind can help change the direction. So, it is important residents are prepared.

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