Mulch fire burning in El Mirage

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By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver

EL MIRAGE, Ariz. -- Firefighters say a mulch fire in El Mirage will likely burn for several days.

The fire was reported shortly before 9 p.m. Saturday at a mulch and firewood facility near Butler Drive and Dysart Road.

It had burned about 20 acres as of Sunday evening.

Firefighters are trying to contain the flames by moving some of the mulch, which is nearly 15 feet deep in most areas, and lighting backfires until the fire burns itself out.

"The strategy at this point is to prevent the fire from spreading further," said Rural Metro Fire Department spokesman Colin Williams. "Rural Metro crews, along with the property owner, used heavy equipment to literally separate very large piles and prevent the area that was burning from spreading into the unburned area.

"If we were to add water to this fire, it would only slow down the burning process. It wouldn't really extinguish it. It would create more smoke and prolong the agony out here."

No homes are threatened, according to the El Mirage Fire Department.

Fire investigators are trying to determine the cause.