Mustang Complex Update 09/09/12
Incident: Mustang Complex Wildfire
Fire Information: 208-865-2207
Location: North of the Main Salmon River, currently 2.0 miles west of the community of North Fork, Idaho.
Jurisdiction: USDA Forest Service, Intermountain Region, Salmon-Challis National Forest
Resources: 1,152 personnel, including 21 hand crews, 90 engines, 5 dozers, 12 water tenders, and 5 helicopters.
Forecast: Expect active fire weather conditions today in advance of a strong cold front moving across the Mustang Complex early Monday morning. A Red Flag Warning is in effect from noon until 9:00 p.m. today for strong southwest winds and low relative humidities preceding the frontal passage. The winds may channel in the canyons and valleys that align southwest to northeast.There is also a remote chance of a thunderstorm over the fire; however, no significant precipitation will likely accompany any storm that develops. These storms may produce dry lightning and outflow boundaries containing gusty winds. The Haines Index is 5 today, thus moderate atmospheric instability may lead to rapid fire growth and spread. To summarize, the public should maintain a high level of situational awareness and preparedness due to the potential for rapid fire growth.
Remarks: Fire activity and spread on the perimeter and interior of the Mustang Complex was lower than in previous days and nights. The acreage burned yesterday was estimated to be 1,617 acres. Based on last evening's infrared flight, the predominant fire growth was again on the eastern fire perimeter. Some of the additional acreage burned included the successfulburnout operations occurring in Hull Creek and Hughes Creek drainages. Yesterday's subdued weather and fire behavior conditions allowed firefighters to employ direct attack strategies on the fire perimeter in these communities to better prepare for today's adverse fire weather conditions. Similar to yesterday, there was an absence of large crown runs. Given the predicted weather and fire behavior conditions over the next 24 hours, today's priorities are to keep the fire away from communities and to defend structures if any are threatened by fire. On the latter objective, the North Fork Fire Protection District activated its mutual aid agreement on Saturday. The additional structural protection engines ordered under the agreement are arriving at the Mustang Complex's North Fork Base Camp this morning and will be available for fire suppression and structure protection operations. Area residents and visitors should exercise caution when traveling Highway 93 today due to the additional fire personnel and equipment that will also be traveling on this highway.
Evacuations: The section of Highway 93 corridor that was previously at Evacuation Level 2 was elevated to Level 3 at 6:00 a.m. this morning. Law enforcement is going door to door to notify residents of this highest level of evacuation. A news release containing shelter information was released earlier today and can be found on Inciweb. The Idaho National Guard continues to assistthe National Forests by staffing traffic control points around the fire.
Contingency Work: Contingency work improvements continue along the Highway 93 corridor from North Fork to Lost Trail Pass and Hughes Creek, Montana. Contingency work crews will also be available to assist with fire suppression if needed.
For information on National Forest area, trail, and road closures, visit http://www.inciweb.org/incident/closures/3100/.
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