Wind whips welder spark-ignited fire

ALAMOSA — Alamosa firefighters were on the scene of a wind-driven fire all afternoon and well into the evening on Monday after sparks from a welder ignited brush off County Road 109 South (Old Sanford Road.)

According to Alamosa Fire Chief Don Chapman a well was being drilled in the area, and the well casing was being welded when sparks from the welder caught area brush on fire. He said the fire, which began about noon, spread to a neighboring property and burned approximately 100 acres of brush and pastureland by evening. Chapman anticipated that firefighters would have to return on Tuesday for mop up operations.

He added no buildings were threatened by the fire, and firefighters were able to keep it away from haystacks as well. Winds made fighting the fire more difficult, however, Chapman said.

He said Alamosa firefighters received the assistance of firefighters from the Mosca-Hooper and La Jara departments, Division of Fire Prevention and Control and the Alamosa County Road and Bridge Department.

Chapman said the welding on Monday was not illegal, as there is no current ban in place at this time. “I am sure it will be forthcoming,” he added.

Courier photo by Jefferson Geiger.