Created: Tue, 10 Jun 2014 11:04:00 MST
Updated: Tue, 10 Jun 2014 11:26:26 MST
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - Multiple emergency crews rushed to Highway 65 Tuesday afternoon to minimize the damage from a wildland fire.
The fire ignited when a semi truck hit the guardrail on Westbound I-70 and sprayed sparks across dry grass. Officials said the flames only burned about one and a half acres, but it could’ve been a lot worse if it wasn’t contained quickly.
“A lot of times when a small fire begins, especially at the bottom of these canyons, it could spread relatively easy,” said Upper Colorado River Interagency Management information officer Chris Joyner. “We're really fortunate that the location of this fire gave us the opportunity to get on it quickly [and] get it contained and controlled.”
This year’s fire season has been mild compared to the past two years, but now the Grand Valley is entering the most dangerous month for wildfires.
“June is our driest month of the year precipitation wise,” said forecaster at the National Weather Service Joe Ramey.
Ramey said the Grand Valley is not in a drought stage but is still below average with rain fall numbers.
The monsoon season is expected to descend upon Western Colorado in mid-July, which experts anticipate will greatly cut the risk of destructive wildfires.