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Monday, May 26, 2014

Slide Fire at 13,423 acres, 10% contained

UPDATE - Slide Fire


LOCATION: The Slide Fire is located in Oak Creek Canyon north of Slide Rock State Park and burning northward, predominantly on the west side of the canyon.

SIZE: Approximately 13,423 acres; 10% containment

AIR QUALITY: Sedona experienced very high levels of particulates in the morning hours on Sunday. The public is advised that if they feel ill as a result of wildfire smoke to take necessary precautions including to stay indoors, use a HEPA filter, limit your activities and contact your health care provider for additional information. Residents and motorists are asked to use caution as visibility may be limited at times. For information regarding the health impacts of wildfire smoke, visit the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality’s (ADEQ) website for Wildfire Support, http://www.azdeq.gov/function/programs/wildfire.html. The Arizona Department of Health Services – Wildfire Smoke & Your Health website, http://www.azdhs.gov/phs/oeh/toxicology/wildfires.htm has information regarding health affects of smoke from wildfires and wildfire safety. For up-to-date monitoring information for particulate matter, visit the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) Web page for Portable Particulate Monitors, http://www.phoenixvis.net/PPMmain.aspx.

EVACUATIONS: As of mid-day on Sunday, there are no new evacuations. Evacuations remain in place in Oak Creek Canyon from Slide Rock State Park to Sterling Springs Hatchery. The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office has announced the lifting of the pre-evacuation warning, effective at noon on Monday, May 26 for residents impacted by the Slide Fire in the Kachina Village and Forest Highlands sub-divisions.  This action is dependent on fire activity. An evacuation center is located at Sinagua Middle School at 3950 E Butler Ave. in Flagstaff. A shelter for pets has been set up at the Coconino Humane Association 3501 E. Butler Ave.

Coconino County is reminding people to register their cell phone number with the CodeRed system at www.coconino.az.gov/emergency. Only registered phone numbers will receive notifications about any pre- or mandatory evacuation order.

FIRE ACTIVITIES: On Saturday, efforts to suppress the fire were hindered by smoke that prohibited the use of aerial observation aircraft. Helicopter activity supporting firefighters on the line was also significantly reduced. Late in the day a helicopter was able to complete a mission dropping ignition devices (PSD) to burnout fuels between the West Fork of Oak Creek Canyon and the fire line along Forest Road (FR) 535. High moisture levels over the fire during the night time hours prohibited further burnout operations. A 230KW power transmission line was re-energized located northwest of the fire. Another APS line was also energized heading east from the Arizona Department of Transportation maintenance facility near the overlook on Hwy 89.

On Sunday, burnout operations will continue along Woody Mountain Road FR 231 depending on weather conditions and the outcome of nightshift operations. Crews will continue to mop up and reinforce completed containment lines on the perimeter of the fire. Fire personnel will also work with APS in Oak Creek Canyon to repair power lines damaged in the area. While burning conditions on Sunday will be tempered by weather conditions, a warmer and dryer period is expected for early this week.

Although numerous burnout operations have occurred over the fire, the overall impact is very similar to those of a controlled burn. Sensitive application of fire is utilized to minimize impact on the forest.

Because of fire conditions Coconino County has instituted a ban on open burning on County public lands and private lands in the unincorporated areas of the County. The ban went into effect at 10:30 a.m. Friday May 23 and will remain in effect until fire danger conditions subside. Further information on this ban may be found at www.coconino.az.gov.

CLOSURES: Hwy 89A from Sedona to Ft. Tuthill, Forest Road (FR) 535 at Hwy 89A, FR 533 at Hwy 89A, FR 231 at Rogers Lake, FR 527 & 530 (west side, Volunteer Canyon area), and Casner Mountain closed to all vehicles.

INFORMATION: Coconino County has set up a call center to obtain general information regarding the fire, (928) 679-4173. For detailed fire information, visit the Incident Management System (InciWeb). For information regarding fire restrictions, visit Arizona Fire Restrictions at http://firerestrictions.us/az or Arizona Fire Prevention & Information (fire restrictions & red flag alerts) at http://wildlandfire.az.gov.

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