The Lower North Fork Fire started on Monday, March 26. Preliminary reports indicate that the fire was caused by embers from a prescribed fire (Rx). An investigation is ongoing. The Rx was ignited on Thursday, March 22 by the Colorado State Forest Service on Denver Water Department lands to reduce the level of hazardous fuels. The Rx was completed the same day. Firefighters mopped up remaining hot spots on Friday and continued patrols throughout the weekend. On Monday, a cold front passed through the area with wind gust over 50 mph. These gusts presumably carried embers from the interior Rx, across containment lines to receptive fuels starting the wildfire. It then spread into the crowns of the trees and driven by the strong winds, quickly advanced to the northeast onto private lands. Local firefighters immediately responded to the wildfire, but were unable to contain it, due to the extreme winds and dry and abundant fuels. Additional firefighting resources were called in from the surrounding area and adjoining states to help with the effort.
This intense wildfire resulted in the fatalities of three citizens, destruction or damage to 25 homes and numerous outbuildings, and caused thousands of residents to evacuate the area.
The wildfire is now 100% contained. Final acreage remains at 4,140. Transfer of command from Harvey's Great Basin Type 1 Incident Management Team to the local Jefferson County Type 3 Incident Management Team will occur at 7 am, on Tuesday, April 3.
|Cause||Possible Escaped Prescribed Fire|
|Date of Origin||Thursday March 22nd, 2012 approx. 01:00 PM|
|Location||1 mile eastof Foxton, CO|
|Incident Commander||Rich Harvey|
|Estimated Containment Date||Monday April 02nd, 2012 approx. 12:00 AM|
Closed timber litter
Isolated interior smoldering
A cold front moved in the area bringing rain and snow.
Continue to patrol and grid for hot spots. Continue demobilization of firefighting resources. Transfer of command from Harvey's Type 1 Team to Jeferson County Type 3 Team will occur at 7 am, Tuesday morning, April 3.
There have been three civilian fatalities and one firefighter injury to date. Additional rain and snow is forecast for tomorrow. Kuehster Road will open to residents only south from Critchell Road.
|Wind Conditions||22 mph E|