Winds rustle up fire in Upper Valley

Monday, March 4, 2013 - 11:42pm

High winds made for a rough day for dozens of firefighters, as they tried to put out fires in both West El Paso and in the Upper Valley.
Gusts reached 59 miles an hour Monday kicking up flames in one family's fields.  

It was an afternoon Cassie Johnson won't soon forget.

"It's pretty huge pretty scary especially, since I had no one to help me," Johnson said.

Her parents had gone out of town.  It was just her and 5 acres of alfalfa at their Upper Valley home, when the fire broke out.

"I come to the back and the backyard is engulfed in flames," she said. "I'm just freaking out. Call 911 rush to the back. Try to put it out a little bit".

 About 2of the five acres burned. Johnson used buckets and hoses to extinguish the flames, but to no avail, the winds were stoking the fire. 

"Should I start packing up my stuff and get out?," Johnson said.

Firefighters aren't sure how it started, but say smoldering embers from a controlled brush burn on Saturday could be to blame.
It might not have been completely put out.

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