Man Starts Wildfire by Burning a Spider


Many wildfires are started by human error. This was certainly the case after a Utah man started a wildfire while trying to burn a spider with his lighter.

Cory Allan Martin was hiking in the foothills south of Salt Lake City, near Springville, when he spotted the spider. He told deputies that he was the one who started the fire but no explanation was given as to why he was trying to burn the spider.

“What led him to stop and notice a spider and decide to try to burn it, we don’t know. There may not be a why. He might not even know a why,” Sgt. Spencer Cannon said.

Deputies from the Utah County Sheriff’s Office later found a jar of marijuana in Martin’s belongings but the hiker didn’t appear high during the arrest. There was no evidence to suggest the 26-year-old started the fire intentionally but it was still a reckless decision.

Utah is going through an extreme drought at the moment and the wildfire quickly spread throughout the area. Thankfully, it only burned less than 1 square mile and no homes had been damaged.

According to court documents, Martin was arrested on suspicion of reckless burn and possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. He was booked into the Utah County Jail with a $2,000 bail.


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