Crews from Sublette County
Unified Fire responded to a large structure
fire at 311 Forty Rod Road on Monday,
April 29. Smoke plumes were visible
from Pinedale. Dispatch received the first
call at 3:15 p.m. from an individual who
only provided their first name, said Travis
Bingham, public information officer at the
Firefighters responded with equipment
from the Pinedale, Big Piney-Marbleton,
Daniel and Kendall Valley battalions, said
Mike Petty, public information officer with
SCUF. The fire was “fully involved” when
the first crews showed up, Petty said, and
the priority was to help the property owner
save equipment that was near the barn.
The fire spread quickly due to flammable
items stored in the barn, Petty said.
There was at least one large explosion,
sending flames and smoke high in the sky.
Petty said the possible source of the explosion
were fuel barrels by the barn.
“It’s difficult to suppress a fire like that,”
Petty said. “There was heavy fuel loading –
a lot of stuff that can catch fire and narrow
the response time to save a structure. The
strategy is to contain the fire and keep it
from spreading around to fields and adjacent
A wildland fire truck was on standby in
case the fire spread into the nearby sagebrush.
Firefighters established a “rural
water shuttle operation” and used additional
water trucks supplied by the town of
Pinedale to haul water to the site, he added.
The intense flames destroyed the barn.
Nearby equipment “received some damage,”
Petty said. However, firefighters
succeeded in containing the fire to the
barn. All of the surrounding structures, including
homes, were saved and there were
no injuries reported to people or animals,
The fire was ruled “accidental” by
SCUF investigators, Petty stated. A
wood-burning stove with an oil drip system
installed to provide extra heat was
left unattended. The oil drip system malfunctioned
when no one was around and
sparked the fire that spread rapidly through
the barn, Petty explained.
Petty stressed that when people are
using heat stoves, they need to stay nearby
and be vigilant at all times during the stove’s
The lot where the fire occurred is owned by
CL Bar Properties, Inc.