State Route 87 has reopened after closure due to fire on Friday

Jul 7, 2023, 8:41 PM | Updated: Jul 8, 2023, 8:50 am

Tanker fire...

(Photo by Brian Daley)

(Photo by Brian Daley)

PHOENIX — State Route 87 was opened in both directions Saturday morning after Gila County officials fought an eight-acre fire that flared up Friday evening, forcing the road’s temporary closure.

It started with a vehicle that burst into flames on Highway 87 at Milepost 244 south of Payson, according to a news release from Gila County Emergency Manager Carl Melford.

A car crash may have triggered the fire, since the Arizona Department of Transportation attributed the highway closure to a “car crash/vehicle fire.”

The so-called “Tanker Fire” is burning around six miles south of Payson.

People who live near Round Valley, Oxbow Estates or Gibson Ranch should be packed up and ready to go, according to a public health announcement from Gila County.

The Payson Police Department said fire crews are working to contain the fire.

“Residents of Round Valley and Oxbow Estates will be allowed home, as their communities remain in set status,” Payson police said.

This is an ongoing story.

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State Route 87 has reopened after closure due to fire on Friday