Although abandoned campfires cause plenty of wildfires in the high county, it’s a different story in the desert. Here are six ways you can accidentally start a wildfire.

The Pinal Fire burning south of Globe had scorched nearly 6,000 acres of land by Friday evening, prompting officials to issue a precautionary pre-evacuation notice to some residents in the area, the Gila County Sheriff’s Office said.

The notice only affects residents in the Icehouse and Kellner canyons who are south of the Icehouse and Kellner junction, southwest of Globe.

Officials stressed that residents do not need to leave the area at this time, adding that the precautionary notice is because of a change in the fire’s “weather and fuel conditions.”

Local public-safety personnel will be going door to door to give residents information about the pre-evacuation procedures, the Sheriff’s Office said. 

The Sheriff’s Office said residents should start making preparations now in case an evacuation becomes necessary. 

Residents with livestock can choose to shelter their animals at the Burch Sale Yard, officials said, adding that the Phoenix Humane Society would assist in providing shelter for pets if necessary. 

As of Friday evening, the fire had burned 5,692 acres and was 32 percent contained, according to the Tonto National Forest. 

Nearly 600 personnel are working on combating the fire, almost double the amount from Wednesday. 

On Wednesday, the fire had consumed about 4,300 acres. 

The Pinal Fire is the first naturally caused fire to spread through the area in 65 years, starting from a lightning strike on the afternoon of May 8. The fire is being fueled by timber and chaparral in the area, officials said.

Fire officials determined early on to treat the fire as a controlled burn because the area had not burned naturally in so long, while keeping crews in place to prevent it from crossing containment lines.

Residents with questions are asked to call the Pinal Fire Incident Command Center at 928-487-0676.

The Tonto National Forest said the fire is expected to be contained by June 15.


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