Pine Creek Fire Morning Update - September 1st, 10 AM
Incident: Pine Creek Fire Wildfire
PINE CREEK FIRE UPDATE - SEPTEMBER 1, 2012 10 A.M.
Contact: Fire Information
Phones: Incident Command Post 406-333-9884
Terina Mullen 406-208-0934
Karen Tuscano 406-223-2028
Warren Bielenberg 865-919-8663 (media contact)
FIRE NAME: Pine Creek
DATE OF DETECTION: August 29, 2012
CAUSE: Unknown (under investigation)
CURRENT SIZE: 9,300 acres
LOCATION: Pine Creek on the east side of Paradise Valley
AGENCY: Park County, Gallatin National Forest
IMT: Greg Poncin's Northern Rockies Incident Management Team
YESTERDAY'S ACTIVITY: Strong winds from a thunder cell that passed over the fire area in the afternoon pushed the fire to the south toward George Creek, prompting a mandatory evacuation of residents in that area. The southern road block on East River Road was moved down to south of George Creek. Engines worked through the night to patrol and mop-up any flare-ups around structures in the fire area. A spot fire was detected on the northern edge in the Davis Creek area. Helicopters dropped water to keep it from advancing further into the drainage.
The fire area received about .10" of rain in the afternoon and more again during the night, decreasing fire activity. Relative humidity recovered to 90% last night.
TODAY'S WEATHER AND PLANNED ACTIVITY: Today's forecast calls for temperatures in the mid-80s and minimum relative humidity of 25%. Southwest winds from 10-20 mph, with gusts up to 40 mph associated with passing thunderstorms, are predicted. A RED FLAG WARNING is in effect through tonight.
Engines and firefighting crews will work to improve and reinforce constructed dozer lines behind private residences on the west side of the fire. Fire officials will scout for opportunities to remove fuel between the constructed fire lines and the active edge of the fire to the east.
Resources will be available to assist in the initial attack of any new fire starts in the fire area.
PERSONNEL AND RESOURCES ON THE FIRE: There are approximately 195 personnel assigned, including 6 crews, 9 engines, 3 water tenders, 5 dozers, 3 pieces of heavy equipment, and 5 helicopters (1-type I, 2-type II, 1-type III).
SPECIAL CONCERNS: Fuels in the area are extremely dry and receptive to burning. There is a RED FLAG WARNING in effect today through tonight for low relative humidity, thunderstorms, and shifting winds.
EVACUATIONS & CLOSURES: The East River Road is closed to all traffic from Carter's Bridge to south of George Creek. The southern roadblock has been moved north to George Creek.
Some residents are allowed to pass through the north roadblock at Carter's Bridge (East River Road and Highway 89S) to access their properties.
Residents on Pool Creek Road, Deep Creek Bench Road, Deep Creek South Fork Road, George Creek and McDonald Creek may return to their homes, under a pre-evacuation warning. Residents may go home, but are encouraged to keep their bags and important items packed and ready to go.
Those residents on Deep Creek Road are still evacuated and not being allowed back to their residences yet. Closure areas and locations of roadblocks will be assessed daily by the Park County Sheriff's Office, in consultation with fire operations managers.
Residents only will be allowed to briefly access their properties, via Sheriff's Office escort, for emergency purposes (i.e. care for livestock and pets, retrieve medical supplies). Access will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Residents should meet at the Pine Creek Fire Station #2 on 3 Pine Creek Road and access through the Pine Creek Road entrance. Escorts will begin at 9:30 a.m. today and continue through noon.
A forest area closure is in effect for the area from the West Boulder River west to the forest boundary in Paradise Valley, and from the forest boundary south of Livingston to George Lake and east to the Tumble Creek drainage which is a tributary of the West Boulder River.
A temporary flight restriction (TFR) is in place over the fire area in order to safeguard aerial fire operations.
SPECIAL MESSAGES: Travelers should be cautious of increased fire traffic on Highways 89. People who wish to make donations should consider helping friends and neighbors that were impacted by the fire. Other options include the Wildland Firefighter Foundation.
For further information, go to www.inciweb.org.
Follow the Northern Rockies IMT on Facebook and Twitter (Northern Rockies National IMT).
Park County Emergency Phone: 406-224-0808