Sunday wildfire update

POSTED: Monday, April 25, 2011 - 10:45am
UPDATED: Friday, April 13, 2012 - 8:54am

Yesterday, Texas Forest Service responded to 17 new fires for 1,401 acres. Over
the last five days due to more favorable weather conditions good progress has
been made on containment and control on many of the fires in Texas .

Texas Forest Service managed out of Merkel by the Texas Lone Star Incident
Management Team has had no requests for assistance from local fire departments
today.

CARRYOVER FIRES

Stonewall, Knox and King Counties, Swenson Fire – 122,500 acres. This fire has
been declared controlled.

Kent, Stonewall, Fisher and Scurry Counties - Cooper Mtn Ranch Fire. - 162,625
acres. This fire has been declared controlled.

Jim Wells County, County Road 410 - 15 acres. 100 percent contained. This fire
is expected to be declared controlled later this evening.

Hall County, Springer Fire - 665 acres. 100 percent contained. This fire is
expected to be declared controlled later this evening. Fire was caused by fence
welding.

EAST TEXAS SPRING FIRE

The Florida Interagency Incident Management Red Team (IC Graham) is managing
wildfires in 42 counties in East Texas. The Red Team is in Unified Command with
the Texas Forest Service. The three geographic regions in East Texas are
designated North, Central, and South. For East Texas fire information contact
Bill Scaramellino, PIO @ 936-639-8165 or
easttexasfires@yahoo.com<easttexasfires@yahoo.com> .

New Fires

Sabine County, No. 319 - 1 acre. Controlled. Four homes were threatened and
saved.

San Augustine County, No. 320 - 7 acres. 100 percent contained. One structure
was threatened and saved.

Carryover Fires

Montgomery County, No. 317 - 17 acres. Initially, Four homes were threatened and
saved. Fire cause is unknown.

Freestone County, No. 108 - 78 acres. Will continue to monitor fire area for
re-burn.

Tyler and Hardin Counties, Pipeline Fire (No. 260) - 7,101 acres. Two 20-person
hand crews are building line through a swampy area on this fire. National Park
Service resources are also fighting this fire. Estimated 90 percent
containment. Low fire activity being experienced today. Initially 40 homes and 2
oilfield infrastructures were threatened and saved. A vehicle and a camper were
lost. Fire was caused by an oil well flare.

Nacogdoches County, No. 138 - 5 acres. Controlled.. Four structures were
threatened and saved. Fire caused by a power line.

Anderson County, No.141 - 4 acres. Controlled. Cause unknown.

Jasper County, Bad Gate Fire No. 304 - 400 acres. 100 percent contained. Cause
is under investigation.

San Augustine, No. 318 - 18 acres. 2 homes and 2 outbuildings initially
threatened. No fire activity noted today. Fire may be declared controlled later
today.

Newton County, No. 313 - 5 acres. 100 percent contained. Fire is expected to be
declared controlled later today. Cause is under investigation.

WEST TEXAS TRANS PECOS COMPLEX

The Southern Area Incident Management Blue Team is continuing to assist with
management of active fires in the Trans Pecos Complex. For more information on
these and other fires in West Texas, contact C.J. Norvell, Blue Team Public
Information Officer at 432-688-9234 or
transpecosfires@gmail.com<transpecosfires@gmail.com>
Most Active Fires:

Jeff Davis County – Rock House Fire near Ft. Davis
Current acreage: 207,660 acres 75% contained
Due to concerns for public and firefighter safety, as well as a lack of reliable
communications, firefighters have backed out of the Davis Mountains’ steep
canyons to gentler terrain. Dozers cannot be used on the steep terrain; and,
aerial resources have been ineffective. Structure-protection assessments are
ongoing. Yesterday firefighters conducted burn-out operations near the McDonald
Observatory in anticipation of predicted strong north winds (gusts up to 60 mph)
early in the week. The observatory hosted a public meeting last night to provide
information to residents on the fire situation.
Today firefighters will focus on aerial operations, structure protection and
evacuation plans. A Red Flag Warning is in effect today with temperatures in the
80s.

Coke County – Wildcat Fire north of San Angelo
Current acreage: 159,308 acres 75% contained
Activity on the fire was light yesterday with a few smokes reported on the east
side of the fire within the burned area. Today crews will continue to focus on
patrol and mop-up operations. Temperatures will be in the mid-80s. Isolated
thunderstorms are forecast for the afternoon with some being severe.

Crockett County – Childress Fire
Current Acreage: 600 acres 75% contained
Crews are constructing control line and helicopters are dropping water on this
fire and the Miller Fire. Another fire, the Three Goats Fire, has burned about
250 acres and is being monitored by fire crews.

Crockett County – Sutton Fire near Ozona
Current acreage: 30,814 acres 100% contained
The fire acreage has been adjusted based on recent GPS information. This is the
last day the Sutton Fire will appear on the update.

Higher resolution maps are available at: ftp://ftp.nifc.gov/Incident_Specific_Da
ta/SOUTHERN/Texas/Trans_Pecos_Complex/Information/
or ftp://ftp.nifc.gov/Incident_Specific_Data/SOUTHERN/Texas/Trans_Pecos_Com...
GIS/Products/20110419/

Today

* Fire crews are continually working to construct and hold lines as well as
begin mop-up operations.
* Aerial resources will continue to monitor and perform water and retardant
drops as needed.
* Isolated thunderstorms are possible for the San Angelo area. Aerial flights
will monitor the area after the storm to check for ignition of fuels by
lightning strikes.
* Weather conditions are on an escalating trend with increasing winds, lower
humidity, and above normal temperatures each afternoon.Critically dry fuels
increase the potential for new fires and existing fires to spread quickly.
* Today forecasters are predicting a high likelihood for existing fires to
become large based on measurements of atmospheric instability and dryness.
* A Red Flag Warning is in effect today for the Fort Davis area. PK COMPLEX

PK Complex Fire Update: The Southern Area Red Team continues to assist with
managing the PK Complex. For information about the PK Complex, please check
www.inciweb.org<http://www.inciweb.org/>, or call 940-325-4088 or 940-325-3981.
Information lines are staffed from 8 AM to 9 PM.
Yesterday, relatively light fire activity was observed, with scattered hot spots
and smoldering in the interior of the fire. This allowed crews to continue
building line and mopping up hot spots. A burnout operation was completed in the
southern portion of the PK Complex, which reduced hazardous fuels and completed
objectives toward containment. The operation was followed by significant
rainfall in the southern region, which will also help in meeting containment
goals. The acreage of the complex is currently at 126,734 with an estimated 50
percent containment.
Today crews will continue constructing hand lines and dozer lines throughout the
fire, well ahead of the current fire perimeter, as well as keeping in place fire
engines, firefighters, and other equipment to protect homes and other property
in the PK Complex area. Crews will be mopping up hot spots as they are found
along roads and will also be burning small pockets of vegetation within the
perimeter to prevent future fires.
There will be a chance for isolated storms this afternoon, which may become
severe. Winds will also become erratic in the afternoon and evening.
TOMORROW’S FIRE WEATHER FORECAST
North-Northwest-West-Central-South Branches:

A low pressure system will deepen across west Texas later today and move east.
This will send the dryline eastward across the West Branch by late afternoon. A
stationary front will be located across the panhandle in the Northwest Branch.
Behind the dryline…RH values will drop to less than 10% with west winds 25-35
mph and gusts to 45 mph through early evening. The dryline will extend from
near Jacksboro to Fredericksburg to Del Rio by late this afternoon. East of the
dryline…RH values will generally be 40-50% with southerly winds 20-30 mph with
gusts to 35 mph. Temperatures will be in the 90s later today across most of the
state with 70s and 80s confined to areas north of the frontal boundary across
the Northwest and far North branches. Scattered showers and thunderstorms are
expected again today east of the dryline across the North Branch and East
Branch. Some of these storms could be severe with large hail and damaging
winds. Critical fire weather conditions will occur across all of the West
Branch today and across southern portions of the Northwest Branch. Critical
fire weather conditions will also occur behind the dryline across western
portions of the North Branch and the South Branch. RH values will drop to 10%
or less behind the dryline in the critical area. In addition…winds will be WSW
25-35 mph with gusts to 45 mph.

East Branch:

Warm conditions are expected again today across the East Branch with
temperatures generally in the 80s. RH values will be in the 40-50% range with
southerly winds 15-25 mph with gusts to 35 mph. Scattered showers and
thunderstorms are expected across the northern half of the East Branch through
late this afternoon. Some of these storms could be severe with large hail and
damaging winds.

Special Note

The generosity of Texans wanting to show support for our firefighters by
donating supplies has been humbling and overwhelming. The sincere
thoughtfulness is greatly appreciated. However, our ability to store,
distribute, and use the many donations we are receiving is exceeding our
capabilities.

Those who want to help are encouraged to donate directly to their local
volunteer fire department. Texas Forest Service has established the VFD
Emergency Assistance Fund to help volunteer fire departments. You can also make
a tax-deductible donation earmarked for a particular department, county or
region. All proceeds (100 percent) will be distributed to volunteer fire
departments via grants for firefighting expenses. If you would like to donate to
this fund or if you have questions about how you can help, email
HelpingTexas@tfs.tamu.edu<HelpingTexas@tfs.tamu.edu>.

For information on road closures please go to
http://www.dot.state.tx.us/travel/road_conditions.htm or call 800 452-9292.

Currently there are approximately 1,898 firefighters, including support
personnel, being managed by the Texas Forest Service from 42 states and the
Virgin Islands assigned to Texas fires. This figure does not include Volunteer
Fire Department responders.

Marq Webb
Public Information Officer
Texas State Lone Star Incident Management Team
979-229-7921
For additional updated information, please visit
http://texasforestservice.tamu.edu/main/article.aspx?id=12888

 

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