Lightning-Caused Francis Fire Burns 365 Acres In Davis County, 10% Contained

Sep 16, 2019, 2:57 PM | Updated: Sep 17, 2019, 10:51 am

FRUIT HEIGHTS, Utah – The Francis Fire burned at least 365  acres in Davis County and is 10% contained, according to officials.

Authorities said the fire was started by lightning approximately one week ago and smoldered until winds fanned it into a full-blown wildfire Monday.

“It was a really fast-moving fire and its a little chaotic trying to get all our responders here and get a plan of how were going to attack the fire,” said Kim Osborn with the U.S. Forest Service. “With how quickly the fire was moving, we couldn’t get boots on the ground.”

Layton City officials began evacuating Adams Canyon before 3 p.m. Monday. Evacuations were also underway near the Davis County animal shelter – the shelter itself was not evacuated but about 20 homes were evacuated, according to officials. Search and rescue crews said they evacuated trail systems in Adams, Bair and Ward canyons.

Two large air tankers, 17 fire engines, four helicopters, dozens of firefighters and two additional aircraft were called in to fight the flames.

Officials credited the air tankers – which can drop 3,000 gallons of fire retardant with each flight – with slowing the fire down and making a big difference.

Layton residents who voluntarily evacuated were allowed to return home around 6:15 p.m., according to officials. Mandatory evacuations were lifted at 10 p.m., but officials urged residents living in the evacuation area to remain on alert and be ready to leave should fire activity change.

A red flag warning was in effect for the area and much of western Utah; that warning lasts through Tuesday morning.

Rob Glance and his family were evacuated from their home along Oakmont Lane. What they saw before they left is something they said they wouldn’t soon forget.

“Lots of smoke, lots of flames coming up over the side of the Mountian,” Glance said. “It was a little bit it’s scary.”

His daughter, Madison, said she saw the fast-moving flames right outside of their home.

“I just see this huge thing of smoke and I was like ‘oh crap’,” she said. “I was like we got to start packing because I knew we were going to get evacuated.”

Officials with the National Weather Service said wind gusts in parts of Utah surpassed 50 mph and humidity was as low as 9-15% Monday afternoon.

No injuries were reported but structures were threatened, according to officials.

Wildfire officials asked anyone with photos from when the fire started to submit them for investigators.

UTA officials said routes 455 and 473 were affected by road closures in the area of the fire.

LIVE: Updates On The Francis Fire

Officials are giving an update on the Francis Fire in Davis County.

Posted by KSL 5 TV on Monday, September 16, 2019

Officials said those affected by the fire or evacuation orders could go to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints meetinghouse at 900 East and 200 South in Kaysville. They also reminded members of the public to not fly drones over the fire.

LIVE: The Francis Fire Has Burned 50 Acres Above Fruit Heights, Kaysville

The Francis Fire has burned 50 acres near Fruit Heights and Kaysville. Officials have ordered evacuations for Adams Canyon as high winds push the fire north.

Posted by KSL 5 TV on Monday, September 16, 2019

Officials said cooler temperatures and a shift in winds should help firefighting efforts Wednesday. They will remain on scene throughout the night, just to be safe.

KSL 5 TV Live

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Lightning-Caused Francis Fire Burns 365 Acres In Davis County, 10% Contained