Carbondale: Fire near school briefly out of control |

Carbondale: Fire near school briefly out of control

John Gardner
Glenwood Springs Correspondent
Vail, CO Colorado
John Gardner/Post IndependentA Carbondale firefighter douses the area where a controlled burn got out of control Tuesday morning across the road from Carbondale Community School.

CARBONDALE, Colorado ” A controlled burn at a home near the Carbondale Community School got out of control for a short time Tuesday morning, requiring assistance from the Carbondale Fire Department and worrying some parents of students.

The controlled burn was started about 8 a.m. and quickly spread to two trees within the yard of the home where the burn was happening.

The resident was burning a small section of property next to his house, that was overgrown with native grasses and weeds, when a juniper and a ponderosa pine tree unexpectedly caught fire, Carbondale Fire Deputy Chief Carl Smith said.

“By the time we got there the homeowner had put it out with a garden hose,” Smith said.

But that didn’t ease the worries of Elizabeth Murphy, who called the fire department, after she witnessed the fire latch onto the large tree as she dropped her kids off at school.

“This is not acceptable to me,” Murphy said. “Not in a residential area like this, less than 100 yards from a school and especially with the fire season approaching.”

The school is separated from the residence where the burn occurred by only a dirt road.

“You don’t need to burn this stuff, this is something that could have been done with a lawnmower and some garden gloves,” Murphy said.

On Tuesday, Smith said there were between 10 and 12 controlled burns going on around Carbondale that the fire department was notified of.

“When people call us prior to the burn,” Carbondale Fire Chief Ron Leach added, “surprisingly few of those burns get out of control,” Leach said. “Those few minutes can really help.”

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