Table Mountain Fire News Release(spanish Version Available) - 9/30/2012
Incident: Table Mountain Wildfire
Contact: Public Information Office - 206-947-9705 or 206-947-9737 (Hours of Operation: 7:00 am - 9:00 pm)
Size: 39,315 acres
News & Events for the Table Mountain Fire:
· The community is invited to tour the Incident Command Post at Anderson Hay Company, 910 Anderson Road today between 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
· Hunting Season is open. The Washington Department of Natural Resources reopened all state lands to the east of Colockum road including, Colockum, Quilomene and Whiskey Dick's Wildlife Areas. State lands in the Naneum State Forest, west of the Colockum Pass Road, remain closed because of fire hazards.
· US 97 - As of 7:40 a.m. no restrictions. Please check WSDOT website for current information: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/ or call 511.
· Because of firing operations expect increased smoke throughout the weekend. For more information regarding Air Quality refer to the following websites: http://wasmoke.blogspot.com - http://www.ecy.wa.gov
· The Kittitas County Emergency Operations Center announced changes in the evacuation levels. For current information on evacuations contact the Kittitas County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at http://www.co.kittitas.wa.us or 509-933-8305.
· The Table Mountain Fire offers information on social media sites listed below.
Table Mountain Fire Operations Summary:
· A cold front is expected to arrive within the next few days. No moisture is forecasted, but winds are expected to increase with gusts of up to 30 mph.
· Fire weakened trees, combined with increased winds, pose a health and safety concern for firefighters. Precautions are being taken to reduce the risk.
· A combination of aerial and hand ignition tactics are being used in the successful multi-day burn out near the community of Liberty and Liberty Mountain and the western flank of the fire. It is anticipated this activity will continue through Monday evening. Increased winds and associated drier fine fuels may assist firefighters with burnout operations.
· On the north, south, and eastern flanks of the fire, crews will concentrate on mopping up and patrolling along the fire's edge.
· Structure protection continues in Liberty along with mop up in Reecer Creek.
Closures: Local road closures remain in effect; go to the Kittitas County Emergency Operations Center, Inciweb or the Okangon-Wenatchee National Forest website http://www.fs.usda.gov/okawen for current road and area closure information.
Area Closures: As of September 26, 2012, all State lands, east of the Naneum State Forest line to the Colockum Pass Road, are closed due to fire hazards. Forest closures remain in place for the Naneum State Forest and for the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest east of Highway 97.
Forest Service and Department of Natural Resource Road Closures: Reecer Creek Road at the Sno-park, Wilson Creek Rd. at the end of the county road, Coleman Canyon Rd., Schnebly Canyon Rd., and Cook Canyon Rd. Additional roads include Liberty Rd., Liberty Mountain Association, Williams Creek Rd., Harkness Rd., Pine Gulch Rd. east of Red Top Rd., Cougar Gulch Rd., Boulder Creek Rd., Upper Green Canyon Rd., Sun East Rd. at the top of Robbins Rd., and Elk Springs Rd.
Red Cross Shelter: The shelter at Mercer Creek Church remains open. The church is located at 407 North "B" Street in Ellensburg. The shelter can provide meals, toiletries, showers, or other services.
Animal Shelter: Evacuated livestock and temporary housing for small pets is available. Shelter staff are taking calls from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday at 509-962-7639. If a need arises outside of normal business hours, please call the Emergency Operations Center at 509-933-8305.
Table Mountain Fire: Started: September 8, 2012 Cause: lightning Location: Cle Elum, WA/Kittitas County Resources: 39 crews, 7 helicopters, 85 engines, 9 dozers and 25 water tenders.
RESOURCE CONCERNS: Multiple historic cabins, archaeological sites, mines, threatened and endangered species, old growth reserves.
WEATHER: High pressure will continue through Monday. Drier air will move into the area today resulting in lower RH's. This combined with gusty winds will create elevated fire weather conditions this afternoon. Humidity recoveries will be marginal at the ridges tonight, but good in the valleys. Similar conditions will continue across the fire on Monday, with winds on the ridges even stronger. A strong cold front will move through Tuesday, with the potential for critical fire weather conditions. No rainfall anticipated through this week.
WEATHER OUTLOOK: Mostly sunny and windy. Lower elevation temperature highs will be 74-78, higher elevation temperature 60-66. Humidity will be 28-34% in lower elevations and 34-40% in higher elevations. Winds in the valley are 3-6 mph becoming west to northwest 8-12 mph with 20 mph wind gusts after 1100 hours. Ridge top winds west-northwest 10-15 mph with 25-30 mph winds gusts.
TODAY'S EXPECTED FIRE BEHAVIOR: Wind gusts will produce flare ups in heavier fuels leading to single and group tree torching. Although most of the grass/brush areas in the upper elevations have not carried much fire, the lower elevations will carry fire.
COOPERATING AGENCIES & PARTNERS: Washington Department of Natural Resources, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Washington State Fire Marshall, Kittitas County Fire Districts #1, #2, #7, Kittitas County Sheriff, Yakima County Sheriff, National Guard Resources, British Columbia Wildfire and the Okanagon-Wenatchee National Forest.
For satellite imagery that shows smoke from fires in the area go to the following link: http://sat.wrh.noaa.gov/satellite/loopsat.php wfo=otx&area=west&type=vis&size=1