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Howard Township shed fire spreads to wooded hillside

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A pair of structure fires Monday in Howard Township spread to a nearby forested area, calling for the use of all-terrain vehicles to help contain the flames.

The call came in at about 10 a.m. for a fire along Brownson Lane off Swartz Hollow Road, Howard Fire Company President Mark Ott said. Two garages, owned by Barney Rupert, were reported to be on fire.

When the company responded with an engine and tanker, Ott said, they learned the fire had spread to the nearby wooded hill. Firefighters hit the garage fires and began working up the hill, but came just short of the fire, which continued to spread up the hill.

Firefighters began moving up alongside the fire to keep it from spreading father, he said, trying to set up above the fire to stop it from moving farther upward.

“It’s always a fun walk to try to get up there and break the fire line and keep the fire from spreading,” he said.

A brush truck followed nearby roads to get above the fire and throw down some heavy water, he said. More brush units responded on ATVs, creating a fire line and keeping it from spreading farther into the woods.

Fire companies from Beech Creek, Miles Township and Lock Haven provided backup, Ott said.

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