A brush fire erupted near the Bush Highway on Tuesday. Sandy Schlosser/azcentral.com
A brush fire erupted near the Bush Highway early Tuesday evening, shutting the road to traffic and sending a tower of smoke that could be seen through much of the southeast Valley.
The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, in a tweet, urged drivers to avoid Bush Highway north of Power Road in Mesa because of the fire.
The National Weather Service in a tweet said it was able to detect the fire using a new experimental satellite imagery.
David Albo, a spokesman for the Tonto National Forest, said the Cactus Fire was located between the Granite Reef and Phon D. Sutton Recreation Centers, and was estimated at around 20 acres Tuesday night.
As of Tuesday night, engines from the Tonto National Forest are fighting the fire, but they may later require help from local fire departments, Albo said. In addition, one hotshot firefighting crew has been stationed in the area.
The cause of the fire was under investigation, he said.
The Bush Highway is a popular road that leads to recreational areas along the Salt River and to Saguaro Lake.
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