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Pole Creek Fire threatens Nebo Loop area

UPDATE:

The Pole Creek Fire grew significantly Thursday forcing the evacuation of Woodland Hills, Elk Ridge and the Covered Bridge Canyon community and Spanish Fork Canyon around 6 p.m. that evening.

U.S. 89 in Spanish Fork Canyon is closed in both directions from the U.S. 6 junction to the Utah/Sanpete County border. All homes in the area have been evacuated.

Santaquin and Payson Canyons are both closed, and the Nebo Loop Road is closed from state Route 132 in Nephi Canyon.

The Spanish Fork Police sent out a pre-evacuation notice to individuals south of Powerhouse Road in the area around the reservoir and gun club, asking them to have supplies ready should an evacuation be ordered.

Fueled by wind and high temperatures, the Pole Creek Fire and Bald Mountain Fire have grown forcing road closures and evacuations.

US-89 has been closed from milepost 301 to US-6, according to UDOT and the Utah County Emergency Management evacuated about eight homes along the Nebo Creek Road to the junction with Highway 89 on Wednesday night.

The Pole Creek Fire was ignited by lightning on September 6. It is now estimated at over 4,000 acres. Around 250 firefighters were on the scene Thursday morning. Firefighting is being managed by the Forest Service, but local crews from Payson, Santaquin and other Utah County agencies have been assisting in the fight.

While Santaquin Canyon is closed to traffic, there are currently no evacuation orders for Santaquin residents.

The Bald Mountain fire is burning near Mona and has grown to more than 500 acres. This fire was also started by a lightning strike and has been burning since August 24.

Additional resources and teams are arriving at both fires as officials expect extreme wind conditions over 40 miles per hour and red flag weather conditions on Thursday.