Lumgrey Fire: Air response attacking fire, evacuation warning lifted
(Update 7:05 a.m.)
Updated mapping shows that the Lumgrey fire has burned 207 acres and is 60% contained.
This acreage number will change as a more accurate assessment of the fire perimeter is completed today.
(Update 3:30 p.m.)
As of Tuesday afternoon, the Lumgrey Fire has burned a total of 230 acres and is 30% contained. US Forest Service-Klamath National Forest's Joshua Veal says the fire is fully lined, and estimates that it will be fully contained by noon this Saturday.
(Update 2:30 p.m.)
Caltrans District 2 reports that Highway 96 is open to one-way traffic control until 10 p.m. tonight. The highway will also close again tonight at 10 p.m. and reopen tomorrow morning at 6 a.m., for firefighter and public safety, according to the Inciweb report on the fire.
*Note that the "a.m." and "p.m." times in the Caltrans tweet are typos.
(Update 8:25 a.m.)
Hwy 96 has been closed again, despite being open temporarily Tuesday morning.
Klamath National Forest public information officer Joshua Veal says the majority of fuels burning in the area are pine trees, oak trees and scrub brush. The fire initially jumped the Klamath River, which presented a unique challenge to firefighters.
"Most of the firefighters are familiar with the Klamath River area," Veal said. "They understand the challenges of the river. It doesn't make it any easier for sure."
Veal says there are not any additional regulations in place at this time to prevent future fires, but that is being discussed today.
"We're evaluating the status of that right now," Veal said. "We don't have anything in place right now. The activity over the past 12 hours would prompt something like that."
Veal says KNF lifted the evacuation warnings because the north side of the fire, near Dutch Creek and Empire Creek, held strong overnight.
"That side is looking much, much better than it did [Monday] night," Veal said. "We've got some handline put in and they're going to continue working on strengthening that line. Hopefully it holds today, but that side has really cooled down on the north."
The Type 3 team that was called in by KNF will take over between 8:00 and 9:00 a.m. with a public information officer. Veal noted the reception in the area of this fire is spotty at best, so crews are using radios to contact each other rather than cell phones.
(Update 7:28 a.m.)
The Evacuation Warning has been lifted for both Dutch Creek and Empire Creek.
Highway 96 is open intermittently, flag controls are in place.
The fire has burned 215 acres.
(Update 4:45 a.m.)
According to Seiad Valley Fire Department, a large number of resources have been called out to battle the Lumgrey Fire.
Four heavy air tankers, a Very Large Air Tanker (VLAT), are working the fires.
Currently assigned resources include two helicopters, three bulldozers, two Deadwood crews, 11 engines, three water tenders, two hotshot crews. Ten additional engines, four crews and three water tenders are on order.
The Klamath National Forest took the lead on the Lumgrey Fire.
(UPDATE 8:25 p.m. )
The Lumgrey fire began Monday evening around 6:00 p.m. the two fires have now burned together and is currently 180 acres, with an estimated 30 acres on the south side of the Klamath River. Caltrans District 2 has closed Highway 96 between State Route 263.
Cal Fire Siskiyou Unit is assisting Klamath National Forest with two vegetation fires, the Lumgrey Fire, in the area of Empire Creek Road and Dutch Creek road off highway 96, west of Gottsville.
An evacuation warning is in place for residents along Empire Creek Road and Dutch Creek Road.
The fire has burned 75 acres.