UPDATE 6:25 p.m. — A brush fire near the Bumble Bee exit of I-17 Saturday afternoon caused a long backup on the interstate’s southbound lanes. Just before 6 p.m., the Bureau of Land Management Arizona Fire District announced the fire’s forward progress was stopped and crews were mopping up.
At 6 p.m., ADOT said all lanes were open on I-17 and the backup would begin to lessen.
The fire, about 20 miles north of Anthem, began sometime before 12:30 p.m. It had grown to 25 acres by about 1 p.m., according to the Daisy Mountain Fire Department. Southbound traffic was reduced to one lane, and the backup built in 5-mile increments every 90 minutes or so. By 5:30 p.m. motorists faced a roughly 15-mile backup, ADOT said.
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The fire was named the Poison Creek Fire, according to the Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management. Multiple agencies battled the blaze.