Cause of July Moapa fire released in report

Investigators have determined that a pickup's catalytic converter and exhaust system probably ignited mulch and dried brush that burned 600 acres and caused $2.5 million in damage in Moapa on July 1.

According to a Clark County Fire Department report released Friday, witnesses said a worker in a brush-clearing crew was backing a truck away from a wood chipper when the truck got stuck.

Smoke began pouring from underneath the truck, and workers threw buckets of water on the fire but couldn't extinguish it, the report said.

The fire quickly spread, charring land and destroying a number of structures, including the main house and other structures at a recreation center operated by the Mormon Church.

A state forestry firefighter collapsed from heat stroke while battling the blaze, the report said.


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