Agassiz Refuge Fire Now Fully Contained
Agassiz National Wildlife RefugeFor Immediate Release Nov 17, 2011Contact: Incident Command Post 218-449-4115; Lynda Knutsen, 218-491-4397 cellNOTICE TO MEDIA: This will be the last Silo Fire Update.. more
Silo Fire Summary
The Silo Fire on Agassiz National Wildlife Refuge began as a Prescribed Fire on Aug 23, 2011 and remained within the planned course of action. A series of extremely un-seasonal weather events occurred during the week of October 3rd.
That week Minnesota experienced four consecutive days of Red Flag Warnings. This was the latest issuance of Red Flag Warnings that can be recalled, and also the longest consecutive string of Red Flag Days. This resulted in a change in fire management tactics in responce to the change in fire behavior.
The fire never escaped the burn unit, but on Oct 20th and again on the 22nd, smoke did negatively affect some private property along the west side of the Refuge.
On October 24th the fire was converted to a Wildfire and a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Type 3 Organization was activated to begin full suppression efforts.
Additional firefighters and heavy equipment have been brought in from other nearby FWS Refuges in MN. These additional resources will supplement the Agassiz NWR Fire Management resources.
The fire is burning in peat and mixed hardwood/aspen duff. As the peat layer burns away exposing the root mass of trees, hazardous situations are being created. The work will be slow and methodical using a combination of tracked equipment and hand crews.
The Primary objective, as always, is for safety of incident personnel and the public. The other main objective is to reduce the smoke impact on the public by aggressively suppressing the fire.
|Date of Origin||Monday October 24th, 2011 approx. 01:00 PM|
|Location||14 miles north east of Thief River Falls, MN|
|Incident Commander||Lee Nelson|
|Estimated Containment Date||Thursday November 24th, 2011 approx. 12:00 AM|
FM-9 Aspen/willow and peat.
Smoldering peat and duff.
Continued mop-up. Extended hose lays and added additional drop tanks. Hunting closures are in effect for the fire area. Precipitation of 0 to a Trace on the fire today.
Continue to provide road patrols as warranted to provide for public safety on area roads. Mop-up peat to reduce smoke impacts to area roads and residents. Extend hose lays. Provide resources to assist local station with initial attack on fires on or threatening the Refuge.
Low - perimeter secured by roads, tilled fields, water filled ditches.
High - marsh areas with limited access requires specialized equipment.
Good progress has been made on mop-up. Plan to transition to a Type 4 Organization on Nov. 7, 2011, at 1800 hours.
|Wind Conditions||20 mph W|