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Fire ignites at shooting range

by The Western News
| July 22, 2010 2:54 PM

A grass fire that burned about one-tenth of an acre behind a shooting range Saturday was caused by a bullet, according to a fire official.

“A tracer round that was fired in the rifle range hit a pine tree, ignited the tree and then ricocheted off onto the ground and ignited the shrubs and brush there,” Cabinet View Fire Department Chief Dan Leavell said.

CVFD and U.S. Forest Service firefighters responded to the Libby shooting range on Farm to Market Road at 1:55 p.m. Saturday. The reporting party estimated that the fire was about 30 feet by 10 feet in size, according to reports.

The fire burned about 100 feet beyond the targets, Leavell said. Three or four 40-foot trees crowned with 60-foot flames and the ground was burning with three-foot flames, he added.

After wetting down the edges of the fire, CVFD and Forest Service firefighters dug a handline to keep it from spreading.