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Evacuations lifted after 2 human-caused wildfires threaten homes in Utah

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Evacuation orders in two Utah counties have been lifted for homes threatened by human-caused wildfires.

The evacuations were lifted Friday night for almost 200 homes outside Park City in Summit County and Saturday morning for some 10 homes near Springville in Utah County.

No injuries were reported, and no homes burned in either fire.

One of the fires was caused early Saturday when two teenagers playing with fireworks just east of Springville ignited tinder-dry grass and brush, the city's Department of Public Safety reported.

"The teens reportedly called for help, but the extreme fire conditions caused the blaze to spread quickly," the department said in a statement.

At least 10 homes were evacuated, and residents of another 40 homes were put on notice to be ready to leave if winds pushed the fire toward them.

But the threat subsided later in the morning after a wind shift caused the blaze to burn uphill away from them, fire information officer Kim Osborn said.

About 150 firefighters were being hampered by steep, rugged terrain in their fight against the fire, she said.

PHOTO: In this July 24, 2014 photo, a plane drops a load of retardant as a wildfire burns in the mountains above Levan, Utah. Authorities say the blaze flared late Thursday afternoon on the south side of the Juab County community. (AP Photo/The Salt Lake Tribune, Steve Griffin)
In this July 24, 2014 photo, a plane drops a load of retardant as a wildfire burns in the mountains above Levan, Utah. Authorities say the blaze flared late Thursday afternoon on the south side of the Juab County community. (AP Photo/The Salt Lake Tribune, Steve Griffin)

The 140-acre fire is now 15 percent contained, Osborn said.

The 120-acre fire that prompted evacuations Friday in the Rockport Estates subdivision outside Park City also was human caused and is under investigation, fire information officer Tyler Rowser said.

The fire started in a yurt Friday afternoon and quickly spread to nearby brush.

The community is the same area where a wildfire burned seven houses and one yurt last August.

"It's living the nightmare again," evacuee Vicki Peppler told The Salt Lake Tribune.

"How can you dodge a bullet twice? Two fires and you're going to get through it two times in a row?" evacuee Janine Trolio told KSL.

The removal of vegetation created a perimeter that kept the fire away from her family's home, Rowser said. The ground around the home was completely blackened by flames.

"They had good defensible space," he said. "We preach it. We preach it. These guys listened to it, and that's why their house is still standing."

Officials urged the public to be cautious because of hazardous fire conditions across Utah.

Crews also were battling other wildfires in the state that did not threaten homes.

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PHOTO: In this July 24, 2014 photo, a plane drops a load of retardant as a wildfire burns in the mountains above Levan, Utah. Authorities say the blaze flared late Thursday afternoon on the south side of the Juab County community. (AP Photo/The Salt Lake Tribune, Steve Griffin)
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