Evacuated Residents Learn 74 Homes Were Lost In Dollar Ridge Fire
FRUITLAND, Utah – It was an emotional day for evacuated residents of the Dollar Ridge Fire, as they gathered in the LDS chapel in Fruitland to learn if their homes and cabins were safe or destroyed. For many people, the news was devastating.
Officials reported 74 homes destroyed, with 6 more damaged. There were 158 sheds or outbuildings burned, and 131 camper trailers were lost in the fire, along with 25 vehicles.
For those who lost their cabins, they also lost many sentimental memories.
“That is the hardest thing about everyone losing up there, is we had a our own little neighborhood up there,” said Chad Hintze of Sandy, who lost his cabin in the fire.
Hintze said he loves this part of Utah, and it’s where he someday had planned to retire.
“This was a cabin I have been working on for about four years, (and) just found out today that it is gone,” he said. “We had the fire marshal up there last year and cut down all the trees he told me to, and we had a pretty good pad around it with nothing on it but the 140 foot flames and 200 year old cedars. I kind of thought she was gone.”
A carpenter by trade, Hintze had been slowly building the cabin.
“The worst part is my dad helped me build it and we just lost him in April to leukemia,” he said. “I’ve got this bracelet here, this is for my dad.”
Hintze said he was in the process of getting the cabin insured when the fire broke out last week.
He said he really felt for those who lost what was their only home, along with all they owned.
“I feel bad. There are people who have lived up there 40 years, and they lost everything, too. It’s tragic. No one in our canyon made it. It’s all gone,” he added.
The fire areas remained closed to the public, but on Wednesday, property owners will be allowed into areas where fire was no longer active to see for themselves the devastation caused by the terrible wildfire.