Okanogan Complex News Release

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Okanogan Complex News Release

Okanogan Complex AM Update for 8-29-15

Incident: Okanogan Complex Wildfire
Released: 8/29/2015

Okanogan Complex Fire Update

August 29, 2015, 8:00 AM

Fire Information: 509-850-0083, 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/

Date Started: August 14, 2015, 10:25 PM

Size: 302,225

Containment: 23 percent

Cause: lightning

Estimated Cost to Date: $18.47 million

Injuries: 5

Total Personnel: 1,918

Residences Burned: assessment in progress

Committed Resources: 34 crews, 184 engines, 37 dozers, 41 water tenders, 8 helicopters

CURRENT FIRE SITUATION

A red flag warning is in effect for high winds. An unusually strong front with southerly winds will move through the region, with sustained winds of 35 miles per hour and gusts up to 60 miles per hour possible. The Pacific Northwest Wildfire Coordinating Group took the unusual step of issuing a safety alert warning firefighters and the public for potential risks: rapid fire spread and abrupt changes in the direction of the fire’s movement. Fire behavior analysts expect significant fire growth today on the Tunk Block and Lime Belt Fires. They also expect the Tunk Block Fire to merge with the North Star Fire to the east over the next few days.

Tunk Block Fire (158,892 acres, 10 percent contained): Efforts today are focused on building and securing containment lines on the northern and southern ends of the fire. Hotshot crews completed a burnout operation on the northern end of the fire last night to connect existing fuel breaks and dozer lines. On the southern end, the fire spotted over Highway 155 yesterday and again last night.

Lime Belt/Blue Lake/Beaver Lake Fire (126,782 acres, 15 percent contained): Firefighters are focused on the northwestern corner of the fire, where they are working to secure fireline in the Sinlahekin Valley. This effort is the top priority of fire managers, who want to keep the fire from spreading to Loomis on the north end of the valley. In addition to building containment line, crews have been working to protect structures north of the fire. On the southwestern corner, crews are attempting to steer the fire toward the Tripod Fire scar.

Twisp River (11,831 acres, 96 percent contained): The fire is largely contained and is in mop-up and monitor status. The high winds may cause some torching and flare ups of unburned fuel within the perimeter of the fire.

Nine Mile Fire (4,720 acres, 95 percent contained): The fire is largely contained and in patrol and monitor status.

EVACUATIONS

Information on evacuations is available from the Okanogan County Emergency Operations Center at

509-472-7348 and on its Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Okanogan.County.Emergency.Management

ROAD CLOSURES

Highway 155 is closed from mile marker 42 to 70. Information on road closures is available from the Okanogan County Emergency Operations Center at 509-472-7348 and on its Facebook page (link above). Additional information about closures is available from the Washington State Department of Transportation at www.wsdot.com/traffic/trafficalerts

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National Wildfire Coordinating Group U.S. Forest Service Bureau of Land Managemen Bureau of Indian Affairs Fish and Wildlife Service National Park Service National Association of State Foresters U.S. Fire Administration
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