Small fire put out in Rifle |

Small fire put out in Rifle

Amanda Holt MillerWestern Garfield County Staff

RIFLE – Residents made their way out to Deerfield Park Sunday afternoon, but it wasn’t to watch a ball game. Parked cars and spectators lined the streets around Wamsley Elementary School on the north end of town as a field behind the ball diamonds burned. The blaze, which started between 3 and 3:30 p.m., was declared out at approximately 8 p.m. by incident commander Rob Jones, of Rifle Fire Protection District. No homes were “immediately threatened,” he said.”It looks like it’s creeping up the hill,” said Liz Gascoine, who was standing across from the field just down from her home in Deerfield Park. “It’s a good thing it isn’t very windy. We usually have a good wind whipping through here.””I truly, honestly do not know what caused it at this time; the police are investigating,” said Jones. Garfield County Sheriff Sgt. Kurt Conrad said that the cause of the fire was still unknown.David Smith, who lives across the street from the park, said he saw a man set up an elaborate toy rocket launcher in the park about 20 minutes before he heard a fire was started.”I didn’t see him launch any rockets, but it seems pretty logical – put two and two together,” Smith said.Conrad said sheriff’s deputies came to the scene to assist the Rifle Police Department in case homes on top of Graham Mesa needed to be evacuated, but no residents had to be evacuated.At about 4:30 p.m. homeowner Helen Woodring breathed a sigh of relief.”I’m not too concerned right now,” Woodring said. “It’s not on our property yet. When we first saw it, though, it was burning pretty good.”The fire burned 3-5 acres, Jones said.The Rifle Fire Protection District was assisted by Burning Mountains Fire Protection District, Parachute Fire Department and Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit.Contact Amanda Holt Miller: 625-3245, ext.

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