Firefighters Say 3 Murray Brush Fires Are Suspicious; Police Say They Were Intentionally Set

Jul 30, 2019, 10:22 PM

MURRAY, Utah — Three fires sparked blocks apart and within roughly 15 minutes Tuesday evening, leaving investigators searching for those responsible for the blazes, which were labeled as “suspicious.”

Murray City Assistant Fire chief Chad Pascua said the fires, which started near 200 West and 600 West along 4500 South, and at roughly 4700 South along the Jordan River Parkway, started to break out at around 5:15 p.m.

“All three fires happened really fast—within 15 minutes—which is very suspicious,” Pascua said. “The one on 45th South just west of the freeway was the biggest one—about 3 acres.”

Pascua said that fire burned close to some shipping containers, but none of the fires damaged property or resulted in injuries.

Murray City Police Sgt. Martin Barlow said it appeared the fires were intentionally set.

“We got variable descriptions of the suspects involved,” Barlow said. “Containment was set up, but no one matching the descriptions was located.”

Pascua said the outcome easily could have been worse.

“When people start illegal fires, they don’t know where they’re going to go because the winds shift,” Pascua said. “They can injure people, they can cause property loss—so it’s something that we take really seriously.”

The fire marshal was still working at last update Tuesday evening to pinpoint the cause of the fires.

Bob Lindsey, who lives close to where the fire started along the Jordan River Parkway, said neighbors are well aware of the fire hazards in the area.

“You walk down there, you can see burnt trees here, burnt trees there,” he said. “It’s not uncommon here—it’s just not a good thing!”

He said fires intentionally set in areas where many people live, work and recreate are very concerning.

“Yeah, we have children and babies in the house, and it’s not a good thing,” Lindsey said. “I just don’t want to see them homeless because of a fire, I don’t want to see them burned in a fire and I don’t want to see them frightened, either.”

Barlow said anyone with information is asked to call police dispatch at 801-840-4000.

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Firefighters Say 3 Murray Brush Fires Are Suspicious; Police Say They Were Intentionally Set