Saturday Morning’s Top Stories

Forest Thinning Tool Caused Dog Head Fire

The Forest Service now has its initial findings as to the cause of the Dog Head Fire. Officials told residents a thinning project sparked the nearly 18,000 acre blaze, specifically, a tool called a masticator. They say it grinds and shreds trees, spreading chips around the forest to reduce the fire hazard, but this time officials say those chips caught fire. Even so, forest service officials say they don’t plan to put a halt to projects like the one that sparked the blaze. Residents were outspoken about their concerns saying thinning crews should have been better prepared.
A complete report is expected at the end of the month, but the forest service says there was no criminal wrongdoing found. The Isleta Pueblo whose crew was responsible released a statement, expressing “heartfelt sympathy for those who lost homes or property.” The blaze started June 14th near the Fourth of July campground and burned a dozen homes.

Fuel Spill Closes Part of Interstate

Law enforcement shut down part of I-40 at San Mateo while crews soaked up gallons of fuel from the roadway take a look at this video shot a little after 2 a.m. Saturday morning. It wasn’t long after emergency crews responded.  Albuquerque police tell us a tractor trailer hit something in the road. Whatever it was punctured the fuel tank, causing a leak. No word on what exactly punctured the tank or how much fuel spilled, but police say the truck was carrying about 3,500 gallons.

Burned Signs to be Replaced

Travelers say the Sunport is one of the nicest airports around, but they’re concerned about two damaged road sides which have been ignored for months. The signs are on Sunport Boulevard, after you turn off of I-25. The airport says they’re responsible for maintaining them and the sun caused the damage. They say it’s gotten worse the past few weeks and some visitors say they’re left lost and confused. The airport says they were hoping the sign would last through the end of the year,  as the facility undergoes a $16 million facelift. During that process, all of the facility’s signs will be replaced inside and out.

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