Fire officials will now have to reassess a new point from which to battle the blaze, which was 20 percent contained. The growing fire, burning through brush, grass and juniper, also caused officials to evacuate a second community, the town of Terra, in the afternoon.
The fire also caused the evacuation of the Clover Springs Campground off Highway 199. The Utah Red Cross has set up an evacuation shelter at Grantsville High School, said CEO Heidi Ruster. Ruster said there were power outages at the original shelter site, an LDS church in Dugway.
"That's been a challenge, determining that shelter location in light of the fast movement of the fire," Ruster said.
Wilson said air support from the Rockport 5 Fire near the Summit County town of Wanship was brought in Friday to help, in addition to the two helicopters and two air tankers already deployed. Until Friday, the Patch Springs Fire had been competing with the rash of other fires throughout the state for air attack resources, Wilson said. Now that the fire is threatening homes, the priority for air support has been diverted back to Patch Springs.
Officials reported three injuries in the fire so far. All were firefighters who had to be treated for dehydration. Another source of worry for firefighters is the opening of bow hunting season on Saturday. Wilson said hunters have been calling to ask if they will be able to go into the canyons surrounding the fire. With the exception of the Big Hollow Canyon, which is off limits because of the closure on Highway 199, people are free to hunt elsewhere, but officials urged caution. Wilson said there is fire activity in East Hickman Canyon.
"We're just asking people to be careful," she said. "Just keep your distance."