Sawtooth Morning Update 9-12-12
Incident: Sawtooth Fire Wildfire
Incident Management Team
DAILY INFORMATION FACT SHEET
Date: September 12, 2012 Time: 8:00 a.m.
Incident: Sawtooth Wildland Fire Information Phone: 406-363-3556
7:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Location: Sawtooth Fire is about 3-4 miles west of downtown Hamilton, MT
Approximate Size: 4,100 acres estimated Containment : 15%
Incident Commander: Tom Heintz, Northern Rockies Type-II Incident Management Team
Resources: Hand Crews: (2) Type I crews; (3) Type II crews
Equipment: (30) Engines, (5) Dozers, (10) Water Tenders
Air Support: Helicopters;(1) Type 1 ;(1) Type 2:(1) Type 3 Total personnel: 325
Injuries: 3 Cost to Date: $2,200,000
Fire Update: A stage 2 evacuation notice remains in place for the following area:
All residential and commercial properties West of Westside Road; South of Paradise Trail and Blodgett Camp Road; and North of North Gold Creek Loop. The Ravalli County Emergency Operations Center has a public information phone number that interested parties may call at Ravalli County EOC 406-375-6650. The American Red Cross has established an evacuation center located at the First Baptist Church, 354 Cooper Lane, in Hamilton. The phone number for the sheltering and evacuation center information is 406-363-3735.
Chilly! Or, downright "cold" was the greeting this morning in camp with the temperature at 25 degrees. The fire that is up on top of the area behind Downing Mountain is still hanging in the rock up there and does have the potential to move to the North if the weather conditions get favorable for that to happen. There was some fire movement over the contingency line again, but crews were able to secure them using the existing roads and hardening the line with fire. Today operations will place a crew into the Sawtooth canyon in an attempt to work the areas where the fire has moved across the drainage. Pumps and hoseline that were placed there when this team first came to the fire will be used by the crew being flown in. At the mouth of Sawtooth there may be more burning operations as they attempt closing the line off to the rock outcroppings there. Helicopter operations are likely to be heavy again today and we may be borrowing the use of helicopters assigned to other incidents where that will help make progress here.
While we started out cold, high pressure is building over the area and it will begin to warm up. This will produce strong inversions holding the smoke in the valley. Fire activity will pick up and there may be more active burning later in the day. Winds should be light at 3-6 mph and 15 mph later today. Temperature will climb into the mid 60's and low 50's on top of the fire. Humidity will remain in the high teens.
Crews were reminded that working under and around the helicopters can be dangerous. The rotorwash from the heavy helicopters can break the tops out of the trees, especially those that have been killed by insects and disease.
A type 1 Incident Management Team has been ordered to assume management of this fire. The transition of the incident management is projected to occur tomorrow, after a day of shadowing with this team. The incoming team is a Northern Rockies IMT, like ours, with Greg Poncin as the Incident Commander.
An information trailer on Highway 93 at Roaring Lion Road will be staffed as needed each day while this fire is active. Over 200 residents attended the community meeting last night in Hamilton.
Closures: Sawtooth Creek Trail #123, Roaring Lion Trail #124, and Canyon Creek Trail #525, and Blodgett camp ground are closed due to fire activity.
Special Concerns: New fire starts! Attention: Stage 1 Fire Restrictions remain in effect for this area. Information on fire restrictions can be found at http://firerestrictions.us/mt/.
More Information: Visit Inciweb at http://www.inciweb.org/, email email@example.com or call fire information 406-363-3556. Ravalli County EOC has established a recorded phone line with current evacuation information at 406-375-6650.