Rattlesnake Fire update: Firefighters watching weather predictions

April 16, 2018 - 8:08 am
Location: The Rattlesnake Fire continues to burn southeast of Whiteriver, Arizona, on the Fort Apache and San Carlos Apache Indian Reservations and the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests. Southwest Area Incident Management Team 5 is now managing the Rattlesnake Fire.
A Red Flag Warning has been issued for Northern Arizona from 11:00 am to 11:00 pm Monday. The warning was issued for high winds, low humidity and high fire danger. A second storm will bring increasing winds later in the week. These two storms may limit the ability to utilize air tankers and helicopters, and cause dead standing snags to fall over which is a safety concern for firefighters working in the area. The amount of moisture in the grasses and logs are at record lows. These conditions are historically seen during June, causing fire managers to carefully assess where to place fire crews as the storms pass through the area. Crews have been working to secure line up through the Black River corridor, building a “catchers mitt” of containment line along Forest Road 25I. Firefighting resources are also being mobilized to the southeast side of the fire, where they will begin improving fire lines used during the Wallow Fire.
Closures: The closure order on the Alpine Ranger District of the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest has been expanded to include all of the Bear Wallow Wilderness and areas south and west of Forest Road 25. Several roads on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation within the boundary of the Rattlesnake Fire will be closed: The Y79 road at the Y40 Junction and the 25F road at the Y40 junction. Please drive carefully and turn on headlights if traveling on the Y40 road.
Restrictions: Modified Stage 2 Fire Restrictions continue on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation. Campfires will NOT be allowed during the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. and debris burning is prohibited until further notice.
Location: Southeast of Whiteriver, AZ
Cause: Human Caused-under investigation
Percent containment: 3%
Start date: Wednesday, April 11, 2018
Size: 5,719 acres (1600 Sunday night)
Vegetation: Ponderosa pine and grass understory
Resources: Approximately 260 personnel
Anyone having information regarding how the Rattlesnake Fire started is asked to contact WE-TIP at 1-800-47ARSON (1- 800-472-7766).
BIA Fort Apache Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/BIAFAAFireMgt/)
Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/apachesitgreavesnfs)
Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests Twitter page (https://twitter.com/A_SNFs)
Northern Arizona Public Information System (www.311info.net)
Nowhi ni’ nłt’eego anłsih – Take care of our land