Fire Update September 13, 2012 Morning
Incident: Wenatchee Complex Wildfire
Public Fire Briefing tonight 6pm Entiat, WA (Entiat Grange hall)
Following a severe lightning storm that covered much of eastern Washington on Saturday September 9th, a series of fires were discovered. Local resources from the United States Forest Service (USFS), Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Spokane District BLM, Wenatchee Fire Districts 1 and 7,Chelan Fire Districts 1, 3, 4, 6, 8 and Chelan County Sheriff's office began suppression efforts. These organizations and the firefighters that responded were instrumental in minimizing losses and keeping folks safe.
The Type 1 National Incident Management Team, headed by Incident Commander Jeff Pendleton, will continue assessing the affected areas, suppressing fires, ordering and assigning resources while providing for public and firefighter safety. Fires which pose the greatest risk to human life, property, and natural resources are being staffed first along with any news fires.
The high pressure weather system sitting on top of the Wenatchee Valley will bring inversions in the morning and cause winds to be terrain driven. This weather pattern is expected to continue for the next 10 days, bringing unstable conditions to the fire area. With the inversions, smoke from the numerous fires will not likely be able to lift to the 5,000 elevation level where it could mix and disperse.
Canyon Fire, directly west of Wenatchee, is burning in shrub and grass and is approximately 7,900 acres. Structure protection is in place for residences directly affected by this fire. Crews are working today to construct a fire line between #1 and #2 Canyons to direct the fire away from residences and into the high country. The Chelan County Sheriff's department is assessing the need for evacuations and is re-assessing on a regular basis for public safety. Up to date changes can be heard on KPQ radio in Wenatchee or by checking www.inciweb.org/incident/3258.
Byrd Canyon Fire, just north of Entiat Washington, is burning in grass and shrub. It is approximately 9,300 acres. The fire was staffed overnight and a successful burnout operation was 80% complete at shift change this morning. The remaining percent will be completed today as condition allow. This fire is considered 35% contained Evacuations and road closures are in place, please refer to www.inciweb.org/incident/3258 for locations and levels of evacuations.
The Pevine Canyon Fire, southwest of Wenatchee in upper Mission Creek/Devils Gulch, is burning in shrub and pine and is approximately 1,000 acres. Rappelers conducted a burnout operation last night to reinforce a handline on Pitcher Ridge. Evacuations and road closures are also in place for areas around these fires; please refer to www.inciweb.org/incident/3258 for locations and levels of evacuations.
The Poison Canyon Fire, due south of Cashmere, is burning in shrub and pine. It is approximately 7,300 acres. Today crews will work to keep the fire out of Boise Creek on the west and Tripp Creek to the north of the current fire perimeter. Structure protection remains is in place. For evacuations and road closures refer to www.inciweb.org/incident/3258..
The First Creek Fire, 10 miles west of Lake Chelan is approximately 140 acres. It is burning in very difficult, remote and steep terrain. Crews have a 1 � hour hike to the fire and will continue to construct fireline as they arrive. A retardant drop yesterday was placed to help slow the fire's growth.
The Pyramid Fire, due north of Entiat is approximately 100 acres. This fire is burning in timber that was impacted severely by disease and insects. This fire is currently not staffed and is being monitored.
Crews detected five hold-over fires and took action to suppress them. Initial attack crews will continue working to locate, size them up and take appropriate actions. The management team also has equipment in staging as needed.
The Incident Management Team would like to express appreciation to the community for your support and help in our efforts to fight these fires. It is vital that the community cooperates with evacuations, road closures, and avoiding areas of high traffic for fire suppression.