Fire Information: (928) 362-2791 - 8 am – 8 pm
Email: [email protected]
COMMUNITY MEETING AT THATCHER MIDDLE SCHOOL IN THE CAFETORIUM AT 1340 4TH AVE THATCHER, AZ THURSDAY JULY 6, 2017 AT 7PM.
Location: Safford Ranger District of the Coronado National Forest; 7 miles southwest of Safford, AZ.
Statistics: Date Detected: June 7, 2017;
Cause: Lightning; Size: 47,688 acres; Percentage
Estimated Cost: $20.5 million
Resources: Hand Crews: 9; Camp Crews: 3; Engines: 25; Helicopters: 7; Air Tankers: 0; Dozers: 4; Water Tenders: 9; Total Personnel: 528
Summary: The monsoonal easterly flow will become more established over the next few days. Yesterday, helicopter operations were suspended early afternoon because of the heat but were up operating again later in the day. The dark smoke yesterday mid-afternoon visible from the Safford and Thatcher area was internal burning within an isolated area of Swift Canyon surrounded by black (burned area inside the fire perimeter). Approximately 30 local residents attended the public meeting at Bonita Elementary School last night. Night operations continued.
The limited rain focused around Turkey Flat several days ago has changed the character of fire behavior in that area. Hot Shot crews have been able to work deeper into the fire area, building direct fire line up against the active fire edge in several locations. They have been concentrating their work in the area directly west and southwest of Turkey Flat in order to reduce the threat of the fire moving towards road 366. Today crews with focused helicopter bucket support will concentrate on Pitchfork Canyon off the Shake Creek trail and the ridge between Falls Creek and Grant Creek to keep the fire backing down the canyons instead of crossing the ridges towards the east. Helicopter-delivered water and retardant will continue to be a major factor in slowing fire growth and reducing intensity as it continues to back down drainages across the southern end of the fire, the west side of Riggs Lake and Hells Hole Canyon. Yesterday helicopters delivered 33,000 gallons of water and 32,000 gallons of retardant to the fire.
Patrol and mop up around Riggs Lake Campground, Bible Camp, Old Columbine, Columbine, and along Highway 366 to Mount Graham International Observatory will continue. An excavator is doing rehabilitation work on a dozer line near Columbine. The south side and most active part of the fire still has over 10 miles of uncontrolled fire edge.
The fire is being managed with multiple objectives: Full suppression in areas safe for firefighter access, Point Zone Protection of infrastructure/residences, and Monitoring. Operational objectives are 66% complete.
A Burned Area Emergency Rehabilitation (BAER) Team has been working for several days in the fire area to determine if emergency resource or human health and safety conditions exist. They will identify specific areas that may need treatment to resolve any emergency conditions, help stabilize soil; control runoff, sediment and debris movement; prevent impairment of ecosystems; and mitigate significant threats to health, safety, life, property and downstream values at risk. Go to https://gacc.nifc.gov/swcc/information/learn_more/baer.htm for more information.
Closures: The Area Closure for the Frye Fire includes all campgrounds, roadways and trail systems within the National Forest boundary in the Pinaleño mountain range with the exception of State Highway 266 from its intersection at the eastern Forest boundary to its intersection with the western Forest boundary. Graham County Sheriff’s officers will stop any non-essential fire traffic to maintain safety in the closure area. The closure will remain in effect until rescinded. The full closure order and map is available on Inciweb at: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/article/5221/35695/
Fire Restrictions: Stage 2 Fire Restrictions remain in effect on the Coronado National Forest until rescinded.
The following are prohibited:
· Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire, campfire, charcoal, coal, or wood stove fire, including within a developed recreation site, or improved site.
· Using an explosive.
· Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building. (Smoking is prohibited in all federal buildings.)
· Operating or using any equipment powered by an internal combustion engine, except motor vehicles.
· Welding, or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame.
· Discharging a firearm, air rifle or gas gun, except while engaged in a lawful hunt pursuant to state, federal, or tribal law, and regulations.
· Possessing operating motor vehicles off National Forest System roads, including but not limited to cars, trucks, SUVs, motorcycles, and ATVs, except for when parking in an area devoid of vegetation within 10 feet of the roadway, and except for parking overnight in Forest Service developed campground and trailheads.
Fireworks are always prohibited year-round on federal lands
Jurisdictional Agencies: The Northern Rockies National Incident Management Team will continue to work with the Coronado National Forest and the State of Arizona. Cooperators include the Graham County Sheriff’s Office and the Arizona Department of Transportation.
Air Operations: Temporary flight restrictions are in effect over the fire area, and remains in place until further notice. This restriction includes “drones” or unmanned aerial vehicles. If drones are detected, air operations will stop. The public is reminded that “If you fly, we can’t!”