River Fire update; airtankers support burnout operations

September 6, 2019 - 8:50 pm

The River Fire grew to approximately 4,800 acres today, crews successfully held the fire between Forest Road 41 and Forest Road 17. Most of the growth was on the northeast side of the fire as crews completed burnout operations ahead of the main fire.

Airtankers were used to support burnout operations and helicopters were also utilized to extinguish hot spots along the fire’s edge.

Though no containment has been reported thus far, many areas on the fire perimeter have not been active for a few days and are unlikely to spread further.  Due to remote and inaccessible terrain, it is difficult to insert firefighters on the ground to confirm containment in these areas.  Firefighters will continue to monitor all areas of the fire from the ground and the air.

In order to provide for firefighter and public safety, Forest Road 41 (“Table Mesa Road”) has been closed from the Tonto National Forest Boundary on the west to the junction with Forest Road 24 (Seven Springs).  Additional closures in the area may be required if the fire progresses.

River Fire overview


  • Approximately 7 miles north of Cave Creek, and 3.5 miles east of New River
  • Nearest town is New River

Start Date:       9/3/2019              

Size:  4,800 acres (estimated)    

Percent Contained:  0

Cause:  Lightning