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'Slate Fire' south of Payson now 100% contained

Posted: 2:58 PM, Jun 22, 2019
Updated: 2019-06-23 23:14:37-04
Slate Fire - June 22
Slate Fire, June 22

PAYSON, AZ — Firefighters have fully contained a 226-acre brush fire that was burning approximately 20 miles south of Payson.

State Route 87 between Phoenix and Payson was closed in both directions for several hours while crews worked to contain the Slate Fire, which started Saturday afternoon.

Officials say the blaze started after a trailer caught fire on SR 87 and it spread from there, aided by wind.

The northbound lanes re-opened around 2:30 p.m., and the southbound lanes were cleared about six hours later.

Firefighters said crews in the air and on the ground had managed to stop the fire's forward progress.

The fire, which was burning in the Tonto National Forest, was estimated to be 75 percent contained as of Saturday night.

Ground crews returned Sunday morning to secure the fire's perimeter and check for hot spots.