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Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue crews battle brush fire in Tualatin

The fire, near the Tigard Sand & Gravel Quarry, consumes 3-5 acres


SUBMITTED PHOTO - A Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue brush rig sits among some of the ground that burned during a Monday fire near the Tigard Sand & Gravel Quarry in Tualatin.Fire season is here, and in this case, "here" is Tualatin.

At 11:24 a.m. Monday, firefighters were dispatched to deal with a brush fire near the Tigard Sand & Gravel quarry in unincorporated Washington County. On arrival, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue crews found approximately 3-5 acres of dry brush on fire and initiated an attack using hand lines from brush rigs.

Because of the fire's remote location between two quarries, water had to be shuttled in using brush rigs and water tenders. Firefighters were able to extinguish the fire in approximately 50 minutes, but were later called back to the same location at 2:30 p.m. to another report of smoke and flames. Soon after arrival, the incident commander witnessed part of an electrical transmission line fall about 12 feet from its original position over the fire area.

Firefighters then created perimeter around the fire, while Portland General Electric crews assessed the power lines to ensure that no personnel were at risk. Once the area was determined to be safe, firefighters quickly extinguished the remaining parts of the fire.

No injuries were reported and no structures were at-risk.

A fire investigator, in conjunction with PGE crews, determined that the most probable cause of the fire was an insulator on the power transmission line that had shorted, causing sparks to fall and ignite the dry grass below.SUBMITTED PHOTO - A Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue investigator determined that a short in an insulator along a power transmission line was the likely cause of a Monday fire near the Tigard Sand & Gravel Quarry in Tualatin.

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