Simona Fire: Bosque fire near Jarales remains at 25% containment

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VALENCIA COUNTY, N.M. — A 165-acre wildfire south of Belen remains at 25% containment Friday.

The Simona Fire is burning near Jarales Road and St. Thomas Lane west of the Rio Grande, near New Mexico Highway 346. Southbound Jarales Road is closed near the intersection.

The fire is on both sides of the river but crews say containment lines, established Wednesday evening, have all held and fire has not escaped those areas.

At this time, no evacuations have been ordered.

Officials said no structures are threatened, but the fire is threatening two large natural gas pipelines, along with cell phone and internet lines. Fire crews are working to protect those areas.

"We’re very lucky in the sense that we still have crews present from the Big Hole Fire, state and federal resources," said Matt Propp, Valencia County fire chief. "We were able to commit those quickly to this fire in an initial attack response."

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Start Date & Time: April 20, 11:45 a.m.

Start Location: Near Jarales Road and HWY 346, Valencia County

Area Vegetation: bosque, grass

Estimated Acres Burned: 165

Ownership(s): Private

Structures Threatened: Yes, two natural gas lines and a telecommunications line. No homes.

Structures Burned: No

Evacuations: No