Fire staff from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Arizona Strip District is continuing firefighting efforts on the Mt. Emma Fire today. The lightning-caused fire is located 75 miles southeast of St. George, Utah. As of the morning of June 27, 2015, the fire is 3,295 acres in size. The fire began June 24, 2015 at 4:40 p.m. on the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument and burned into Grand Canyon National Park Thursday, June 25, 2015.
“Due to yesterday’s high temperatures, the fire had an active period last night around 6 p.m. which contributed to its growth,” said BLM Arizona Strip District Public Affairs Officer Rachel Carnahan. “The fire laid down overnight but the heat forecast for today could cause an increase in fire activity and result in growth this afternoon,” said Carnahan.
The fire was transitioned to a Type 3 Incident Management Team Saturday morning. Resources on the fire include 1 Type 4 Engine, 2 hot shot crews, and air tanker and air attack. “We are continuing to use direct and indirect suppression tactics due the extreme difficulty and remoteness of the terrain which makes logistics challenging,” said Carnahan. “We have to take into account firefighter safety first and balance that primary objective with fire management objectives.” Direct and indirect tactics includes fire personnel fighting fire on the edge of the fire or removed from the fire in an area which allows them to fall back to road or natural barriers for safety.
The fire is burning in open Ponderosa pine and pinyon and juniper. The Cedar City Air Center and Mesquite Tanker Base are providing aerial support.
The fire is burning within the footprint of the 1999 Emma Fire which burned 1,286 acres. It is also located northwest of the 2005 Tuweep fire which burned 1,866 acres.
The Wolf Hole Fire located 10 miles south of St. George, Utah near Hodgets Canyon that burned 7 acres was called out.
The 57 acre Sand Cove Fire located 30 miles southwest of St. George, Utah on the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument is not actively burning and is under monitor status.
There are no road or trail closures anticipated at this time. The public is urged to use caution when traveling in the area. Smoke may be visible from St. George and Kanab, Utah; Fredonia and the North and South Rims in Arizona.