Morning Update 9/16/12
Incident: Horsethief Canyon Wildfire
Horsethief Canyon Fire Morning Update
Sunday, September 16, 2012
Contact Fire Information
Size: 3,353 acres
Percent Contained: 42
Resources: 9 Helicopters; 16 Crews; 46 Engines; 3 Dozers
Total Personnel: 669
Start Date: 8 September
Cost to Date: $4.7 million
Today, good work will continue to secure the containment perimeter of the Horsethief Canyon Fire with focus on completing structure protection in the Game Creek area. Protection measures have included pump and sprinkler emplacements, a bulldozer contingency line, and handline construction along with brush removal. Handcrews will continue direct attack along the northeast flank with continued aerial support. The Operations Section Chief thanked fire fighters for their progress and outlined the need to avoid complacency. Weather activity in conjunction with unburned pockets of fuel within the fire boundary could still produce active fire behavior. The forecast indicates a cold front moving in that will lower temperatures once again and bring a very slight chance of moisture. Rain would greatly assist firefighters in their ongoing efforts.
Structure assessments continue with 775 evaluations of structures with protection recommendations since the fire's start one week ago. These recommendations have been implemented to provide primary and contingency protection measures for those areas. Dozers constructed additional lines to protect the Game Creek and Porcupine Creek subdivisions. Large, portable water tanks were set up at strategic locations with sprinkler and pump systems. Fire engines continue to provide protection in east Jackson and the Game Creek subdivision. All homeowners, even those not immediately affected by the fire area, are encouraged to take actions to make their homes more survivable against wildfire. Information can be found at www.firewise.org.
The present conditions are still extremely dry and high fire danger exists across the west. The activity on other area fires yesterday demonstrates the potential. Residents and visitors are reminded that open burn restrictions are in place. Check with the local fire agencies and visit www.tetonfires.com for restriction information.
The public is discouraged from gathering along the east end of Broadway along the Elk Refuge fence to view helicopters. Traffic congestion creates a hazard for emergency vehicles and can impact fire aviation operations. The Elk Refuge Road is closed from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. to pedestrians and bicycles from the intersection of E. Broadway and Elk Refuge Road to the Miller House. Local traffic is permitted through but can expect delays. Vehicles are not allowed to stop along the road due to helicopter operations. This closure is being enacted to allow helicopters to safely operate.
Closure Information: No evacuation advisory is in effect; however, residents and visitors are reminded that an area closure is still in effect for Cache and Game Creeks, including trails on Snow King, in order to provide protection of forest visitors from the current fire safety hazards associated with the Horsethief Canyon Fire.
For additional information, see http://inciweb.org/incident/3241/ or www.tetonfires.com. Sign up at www.nixle.com for emergency updates from Teton County.