Whiting Knoll Fire Prompts Road Closures July 5, 2019 Update

Location: Whiting Knoll Cause: Lightning Percent contained: 5%
Date Reported: June 30, 10 a.m. Size: 1,625 acres Fuel: Mixed Conifer, Ponderosa, grass understory Resources assigned: 5 engines, 3 hand crews, 2 bulldozer, 1 helicopter, 1 water tender

Springerville, July 5, 2019 – For Immediate Release – The 4th of July was an active day on the Whiting Knoll Fire east of Vernon. Crews continued with back fire operations, bringing the fire down to Forest Roads 117 and 65 fire line and Apache County Road 3123 fire line. Due to the heavy holiday traffic and active fire in direct proximity, fire managers and Apache County officials have closed these roads for firefighter and public safety.
Early in the day, the fire entered a sizeable pocket of heavy fuels consisting of mixed conifer with a heavy dead and down component resulting in a substantial smoke column through the day. A Navopache powerline that runs through this heavy timber pocket has tripped off line, causing power outages to customers in the Greens Peak area. Due to the heavy fire activity yesterday, line crews were unable to access the area. Navopache anticipates accessing and assessing the distribution line this morning. Currently, the level of impact to the line is unknown and there is no estimate on when power will be restored to affected customers.
Although an active day, operations went as planned and crews held the fire within the fire lines.
Today fire crews will focus on holding and reinforcing fire lines where needed utilizing ground ignitions. Smoke is expected to be heavy into the evening.

Weather: Moisture is expected to graze the White Mountains starting this afternoon bring a slight chance of afternoon thunderstorms into the weekend.
Safety: Smoke may be heavy at times along U.S. Highway 60 between mileposts 370 and 379. Visitors are reminded to use their headlights and drive with caution through areas impacted by smoke. Forest visitors are reminded to drive with caution on all forest roads.
Road Closures and Restrictions: Apache County Road 3123 is closed from Apache County Road 1326 to Forest Road 117. Forest Road 117 is closed from Apache County Road 1326 to the junction with Forest Road 65. Forest Road 65 is closed in its entirety.
Individuals sensitive to smoke are encouraged to visit the Arizona Department of Health Services website at http://www.azdhs.gov/preparedness/epidemiology-disease-control/extreme-weather/index.php#wildfires-home for additional information regarding the dangers of wildfire and prescribed burn smoke and wildfire preparedness. Air quality data from across the state can be viewed at www.Phoenix.net/PPMmain.aspx.
Fire restrictions: The Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest is not currently in fire restrictions. Visitors are reminded to be very careful with fire. Never leave a fire unattended – even for a short time.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.
Additional Information on wildfire and wildfire safety can be found at:
o Northeastern Arizona Public Information System: http://311info.net/ or call 311 or 928.333.3412 o Arizona Fire Restrictions: http://firerestrictions.us/az/ o Fire Restrictions and Red Flag Alerts: http://wildlandfire.az.gov/ o Wildfires Near Me: http://www.wildfiresnearme.wfmrda.com/

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Alpine Ranger District Fire Update July 4, 2019

COLEMAN FIRE: Final Update
Incident Start Date: 6/29/2019 Cause: Lightning/ Natural Size: 990 acres Containment: 100%
Incident Type: Wildfire Vegetation Type: Timber & Short Grass Total Personnel: 4 personnel

Current Situation: Crews completed all burn out operations yesterday, bringing the fire to 100% containment. Smoke may be visible from the Coleman Fire as pockets of unburned fuels continue to burn within the fire perimeter.

This will be the last update for the Coleman Fire unless significant events occur.
Smoky Conditions Remain in the Area: Smoke from the Coleman Fire may be visible from Alpine, State Highway 191, south of Alpine and in the vicinity of the Campbell Blue River. Light smoke may continue to impact Campbell Blue and the Blue community.

BLUE RIVER FIRE:
Incident Start Date: 6/29/2019 Cause: Lightning/ Natural Size: 340 acres Containment: 10%
Incident Type: Wildfire Vegetation Type: Timber & Short Grass Total Personnel: 46

Current Situation Minimal activity was observed on the Blue River Fire on Wednesday. Fire managers are monitoring this fire and are prepared to take action if private or public assets are threatened. This low-intensity fire is being managed to reintroduce fire into the ecosystem, restore natural fire regimes, and remove excess fuels, thus reducing the risk of a more severe, high intensity wildfire later.

If conditions warrant, burn out operations may occur along control lines around the Blue River Ranch.

Smoky Conditions Remain in the Area: Smoke from the Blue River Fire may be visible from Alpine, the Blue River road going south of Alpine and in the vicinity of Campbell Blue drainage. Light smoke may continue to impact Campbell Blue and the Blue community.

Visitor Information: If you are sensitive to smoke, visit the Arizona Department of Health Services website at http://www.azdhs.gov/preparedness/epidemiology-disease-control/extreme-weather/index.php#wildfires-home for additional information regarding the dangers of wildfire and prescribed burn smoke and wildfire preparedness.

o Northeastern Arizona Public Information System: http://311info.net/ or call 311 or 928.333.3412

o Arizona Fire Restrictions: http://firerestrictions.us/az/

o Fire Restrictions and Red Flag Alerts: http://wildlandfire.az.gov/

o Wildfires Near Me: http://www.wildfiresnearme.wfmrda.com/
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Whiting Knoll Fire Map 7/4/19

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