White River National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Glenwood Springs, CO 81602
Buffalo Fire Information
Summit County Sheriff | Summit Fire and EMS | U.S. Forest Service
10:45 a.m., Wednesday, June 13, 2018
Buffalo Fire remains at 91 acres; fuel breaks critical to structure protection
Fire: Buffalo Fire
Containment: 0 %
Start Date: June 12, 2018
Location: 2 miles west of Silverthorne, CO
Total Personnel: 150
Fuels/Topography: beetle-kill/live lodgepole pine
Summary: Firefighters actively patrolled the neighborhoods near the Buffalo Fire area on Tuesday night into Wednesday morning and remained vigilant for sparks and embers. No new growth occurred on the fire overnight, and fuel breaks continue to be critical in protecting structures and providing a place for firefighters to engage the fire safely.
“Without a doubt, this is a serious situation, but wildfire is a reality that we live with here in the western United States,” said White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams. “The good news is that all the right people are here, and we’re attacking the fire aggressively, with firefighter and public safety as the top priority.”
Today, hand crews using saws will work to build control line through beetle-killed timber on the north and west flanks of the fire and work in coordination with air operations as needed. Additionally, firefighters will continue mop-up efforts to secure the perimeter adjacent to the Mesa Cortina and Wildernest neighborhoods.
“Things looked good last night, and the fire did not grow,” said Summit Fire & EMS Chief Jeff Berino. “This has been a great team effort all around, and we are deeply appreciative of all the agencies who have come together to help out. We realize that this is an inconvenience, especially for the evacuees, so we ask for patience and understanding that our primary goal is to keep everybody the public and firefighters safe.”
Conditions today are expected to continue to be warm, dry and breezy with the potential for increased fire activity and smoke in the afternoon.
No structures have been destroyed as a result of the fire; no highway closures have been issued.
Large portions of the Wildernest and Mesa Cortina neighborhoods in Summit County remain under evacuation. The evacuation area (Mesa Cortina and Wildernest above Twenty Grand Road) contains approximately 1,384 residences. The pre-evacuation area (Mesa Cortina and Wildernest below Twenty Grand Road) contains an estimated 1,160 residences.
“We are immensely appreciative of the response and coordination of our partners,” Sheriff Jaime FitzSimons said. “We know this is very difficult and frightening for our community, but we are working hard to keep everyone safe. As the incident continues, please pay close attention to the directions of law enforcement.”
There will be a public meeting tonight at 6:15 p.m. at the Silverthorne Pavilion, located at 400 Blue River Pkwy., Silverthorne, CO 80498.
Evacuations: Twenty Grand Road is closed from Ryan Gulch Road to Royal Buffalo Drive. All roads above Twenty Grand Road are also closed. Authorities will seek opportunities to allow residents to return temporarily to their homes, as conditions allow, until the sheriff lifts the evacuation order.
The Summit County Sheriff’s Office and local police departments have been patrolling the evacuation areas to inform residents about the evacuation order. The Sheriff’s Office encourages the public to comply with the evacuation order, which is in place for the safety of the public.
Frisco Elementary School, located at 800 Eighth Ave, Frisco, CO 80443, will serve as an overnight shelter again Wednesday night. The facility is closed during the day on Wednesday, but will open to evacuees at 7 p.m. The Silverthorne Recreation Center is providing free showers during its regular operating hours for all evacuees on Wednesday.
Smoke: Smoke will continue to be visible from the fire, with the potential for more smoke later in the afternoon. For statewide information on smoke and air quality from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, please visit: https://www.colorado.gov/airquality/colo_advisory.aspx.
If you fly, we can’t: Firefighters would like to remind the public that unauthorized use of unmanned aircraft (“drones”) poses serious risks to firefighter and public safety and the effectiveness of wildfire suppression operations. Please remember: If you fly, we can’t.
Closures: Numerous Forest Service trail closures are in place for public safety. Trails currently closed because of fire activity include: Meadow Creek, Salt Lick, Buffalo Mountain, Lily Pad Lake, Mesa Cortina, Willow Brook, and Gore Trail at Red Buffalo Pass.
Animals and Pets: Summit County Animal Shelter has adequate space to shelter additional pets, and animal shelters from neighboring communities are on call to provide extra capacity, if needed. Evacuees can bring pets to Summit County Animal Shelter from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The animal shelter has received generous offers for donations, but the facility currently has adequate food and supplies, and donations are not needed at this time. Evacuees in need of pet-related assistance can call the Animal Control Hotline at 970-668-4143.
Donations: Members of the public who are interested in supporting responders working on the fire can make financial contributions to the Wildland Firefighter Foundation at www.wffoundation.org. WFF provides support and resources to fallen and injured wildland firefighters and their families. Community members can also show their support by making appreciation signs and posters for responders and dropping them off at the front desk of the Silverthorne Recreation Center. Incident commanders very much appreciate offers of help, but they are asking that community members do not donate food or other items at this time. The Joint Information Center will provide additional information about donation and volunteer opportunities as it becomes available.
Summit County Emergency Blog: www.SummitCountyCO.gov/emergencyblog
Summit County Emergencia Blog En Espanol: www.SummitCountyCO.gov/emergencia
Buffalo Fire Public Information Hotline: 970-668-9730
Media Phone Line: 970-668-9725