Mustang Complex Update - August 29, 2012
Incident: Mustang Complex Wildfire
Fire Information: 208-865-2207
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -
Start Date: July 30, 2012 Cause: Lightning
Current Size: 181,027 acres Containment: 14%
Location: Main Salmon River, 8 air miles west of North Fork, Idaho.
Jurisdiction: USDA Forest Service, Intermountain Region, Salmon-Challis National Forest
Resources: 776 personnel, including 11 hand crews, 39 engines, 6 dozers, 6 water tenders, and 1 helicopter
Forecast: RED FLAG WARNING in effect until 9:00 p.m. today for high winds and low relative humidities. Southwest winds will continue to increase through the morning. After 11:00 a.m., low level inversions that formed overnight will break. Upper level winds will mix down into the southwest to northeast and west to east oriented drainages. An unstable atmosphere and lack of moisture will create aHaines Index of 5. Expect the combination of strong southerly winds and low relative humidity to create changing fire behavior.
Evacuation Announcement: EVACUATIONS ARE PRESENTLY BEING IMPLEMENTED for the Highway 93 corridor due to active fire behavior of the fire just west of Butcherknife Ridge. The evacuation levels are being raised by the Lemhi County Sheriff. The evacuation details are as follows:
1. Evacuation zones E, F and I are now under LEVEL 2. (Homes along Highway 93 between Hull and Sheep Creek and both sides of the highway, and homes in the Hull, Hughes and Sheep Creek drainages). This is a situation where dangerous conditions exist that may threaten residents and/or residences. Residents must be fully prepared to leave at a moments notice. This may be the only notice residents receive. Every attempt will be made to advise residents and businesses as conditions change.
2. Evacuation zones G and H are under LEVEL 1. (Homes along Highway 93 north of Sheep Creek through Lost Pass Trail on both sides of the highway, and homes along Dahlonega Road). Residents are warned that current or projected threats from hazards associated with the fire are severe. This is the time for preparation, precautionary movement of persons with special needs, movement of mobile property and pets and livestock. If conditions change, every attempt will be made to notify residents and businesses.
3. Evacuation zones A, C and D remain under a PRE-LEVEL 1 ALERT. (All homes south of Copper Gulch) This level is intended to allow residents time to make preparations in the event that any one of the evacuation levels needs to be implemented. Safety and readiness of residents is our highest priority and it's never too early to begin planning and making arrangements.
4. The existing LEVEL 3 Evacuation for Indian Creek with area B remains in effect. All other homes within Area B are under a Pre-Level 1 Alert.
No additional LEVEL 3 Evacuations are being implemented at this time; however, a LEVEL 3 Evacuation may be implemented at any time. Under LEVEL 3 Evacuations, residents are strongly advised to leave their property immediately as there is an immediate threat to life and safety. Hull, Hughes and Sheep Creek roads are open to local residents only! Residents that depart the area are asked to stop by the North Fork Fire Station to leave their name, address, and contact information for the Sheriff. This information will help the Sheriff's Department in determining how many residents remain in the area. Because of the evacuation, the California Interagency Incident Management Team 5 is now under Unified Command with the North Fork Fire District.
Evacuation Shelter Information: The Red Cross is opening a shelter at the Salmon Valley Baptist Church. Evacuees must come in this facility to register. This shelter will provide sleeping, meal, and shower accommodations. The Red Cross is also using private homes to place some evacuees. For those evacuating with travel trailers, the Lemhi County Fairgrounds, off Highway 93 on Diamond Creek Road, has trailer hookups and will accept horses. For other locations accepting horses, please contact the Fire Information Center at 208-865-2207, which is located at the North Fork Fire Station.
Remarks: Overnight, the fire was actively growing to the north by more than 25,000 acres. The mandatory evacuation for Indian Creek residents remains in effect, primarily due to the intensity of fire remaining in Indian Creek and ground level smoke continuing to create adverse safety and health conditions in Spring Creek. A continued evaluation of the fire's current situation in the evacuated areas is being conducted and re-entry will be announced as soon as it is possible for residents to safely return to their homes. Between Squaw and Indian Creek upper drainages, the fire perimeter grew substantially due north and reached the Montana state line. Towards the northwestern end of the Mustang Complex, an active finger of fire pushed part way up Wood Hump Mountain. Over 120 residents participated in the Gibbonsville Community meeting last night. Fire managers reviewed current suppression operations and discussed evacuation plans developed for impacted communities.
For information on the National Forest area closures, visit http://www.inciweb.org/incident/closures/3100/.
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