Sequoia National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Porterville, CA 93257
Pier Fire Update
September 2 , 2017, 9 a.m.
Pier Fire Information:
559-539-2607 ext. 2292, 8 a.m.–5 p.m. firstname.lastname@example.org
Tulare Co. EOC 559-623-0200 8 a.m.–8 p.m. https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5548/
Size: 10,311 acres Fire Start: August 29, 2017
Percent Contained: 0 Location: Highway 190, east of Springville
Total Personnel:1,243 Cause: Human caused, under investigation
Resources: 25 crews, 5 helicopters, 87 engines
14 dozers, 11 water tenders
California Assemblyman Devon Mathiswill be visiting the incident command post this morning for a briefing and site visit with the unified incident command.
Yesterday afternoon, CAL FIRE joined the incident’s unified command.
The Sequoia National Forest’s Western Divide district office will be open this holiday weekend, including Monday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
A spike camp at the USFS Peppermint Work Center will be operational by end of shift tonight for crews working on the fire’s eastern side, reducing their commute and allowing them to work on the fireline later into the evening.
Fire Summary: The fire was extremely active last night, primarily on the western and southern sides, growing by approximately 3,000 acres. Routine down-canyon winds were exacerbated by very strong easterly winds from thunderstorms over the Sierra Mountains. At approximately 9:30 p.m., the fire spotted across California Highway 190 and the Middle Fork of the Tule River near Upper and Lower Coffee Campgrounds. Crews already in place tried to contain the fire but were quickly overwhelmed as it grew to 200 acres in less than 10 minutes. Tulare County and CAL FIRE firefighters arrived on scene as a result of the unified effort to suppress the Pier Fire. Residents along Balch Park and Bear Creek Roads were evacuated (see below) as the fire advanced to the northwest through the night, but no structures were damaged.
The southern side of the fire was also active overnight. Yesterday afternoon, the fire had advanced upslope and crossed over the ridge between Black Mountain and Solo Peak on the northern boundary of the Tule River Indian Reservation. Overnight, the fire spread approximately 200 acres downslope toward Rocky Creek.
The eastern side of the fire was less active last night. Near Wishon, it remains south of Forest Road 20S03. Crews conducted low-intensity firing operations along control lines west of Sequoia Crest and Camp Nelson, which have successfully kept the fire from reaching those communities.
As personnel and resources are stretched thin due to national demand, the operational priorities today are the northwest and south sides of the fire. On the northwest, the goal is to keep the fire east of Balch Park Road and connect it with existing dozer lines south of Mountain Home. On the south side, crews will improve existing contingency lines and continue to plan and scout for other areas to contain the fire.
Evacuations: Tulare County has two levels of evacuations: voluntary and mandatory. A voluntary evacuation means residents should either evacuate or be prepared to do so should fire conditions worsen. Mandatory evacuations are issued when the fire poses an imminent threat to life and property.
Mandatory (NEW): Residences along Balch Park Road (County J37) north of Highway 190 to Bear Creek Road, Bear Creek Road (County 220) east of Balch Park Road, Scicon, Mountain Home Conservation Camp
Mandatory: Upper Rio Vista, Cow Mountain (Springville area), Sequoia Crest, Mountain Aire, Rogers Camp, Pierpoint Springs, Cedar Slope, Camp Nelson, Doyle Springs, Alpine Village, Wishon
Voluntary: Springville, Ponderosa
Evacuation Center: Porterville College Student Center, 100 E. College Ave., Porterville. Call 661-324-6427 (weekdays) or 800-REDCROSS.
Area Closures: Today, the Sequoia National Forest issued Closure Order No. 0513-17-34 (https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/article/5548/39662/). Forest trails, roads, and lands around the Pier Fire are closed until the fire is declared out. CAL FIRE has closed Mountain Home State Forest and Tulare County has closed Balch Park. Both are closed until the fire is brought under control.
Hard Road Closures: The following roads are closed to all traffic:
Highway 190 east of Springville is closed south of Balch Park Road.
Highway 190 north of Ponderosa is closed at Forest Road 21S50.
Balch Park Road is closed at Bear Creek Road.
Soft Road Closures: The following roads are open only to residents with a photo ID:
Balch Park Road (County Road J37) at its junction with Yokhol Valley Road.