WILLCOX — For the second time in less than three days, humans caused a grasslands fire.

The Willcox and Sunsites-Pearce fire departments responded to a human-caused grassland fire near milepost 333 on State Route 186 last Wednesday, July 3, at roughly 12:43 p.m.

The Willox Fire Department dispatched a type 6 brush truck and a pumper truck, while the Sunsites Fire Department sent a brush truck, and the Arizona State Land also came to the scene with firetrucks to quell the flames.

The fire crews worked for three hours before the grasslands fire was completely extinguished.

Willcox Director of Public Safety Chief Dale Hadfield told the Range News that the fire began at the roadside and that he would guess it was started by a lit cigarette after being thrown from a vehicle.

“I would ask motorists to extinguish their cigarettes and not burn down the county,” Hadfield said. “The conditions are ripe for bad fires right now with the amount of wind that we’re having and the temperatures that we’re working with. Extinguish all lit materials.”

The fire burned private property as well as State Trust land and did not approach any structures. The fire burned nearly six acres.

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