Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
30 S Chiricahua Tri
Springerville, AZ 85938
Bringham Fire 100% Contained: Burned Area Emergency Response Analysis Completed
Springerville, AZ - July 30, 2020 – The Bringham Fire was ignited by lightning on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests’ Clifton Ranger District on June 6, 2020. Conditions at the time were extremely dry, and the fire, burning in steep rugged terrain, quickly grew beyond the capacity of available firefighting resources. On June 7, the White Mountain Zone Type 3 Incident Management Team, led by Incident Commander Matt Bullmore, assumed command. Driven by strong winds, the Bringham Fire doubled in size on June 11, initiating the action for the Forest to order the Southwest Incident Management Team 4, led by Incident Commander Carl Schwope beginning June 13.
Throughout the duration of the incident, firefighters worked to keep the fire from spreading west of Highway 191, an identified value at risk. Successful on-the-ground and aerial firefighting efforts decreased the fires complexity, and on June 23, the Type 2 Team transitioned management of the fire back to the White Mountain Zone Type 3 Team. Over the next week, fire activity and growth decreased, and command transitioned from the White Mountain Zone Type 3 Team to a Type 4 Organization, led by Incident Commander Joe Names, on July 2.
Thanks to successful firefighting efforts, and the tireless contributions made by the many resources that battled the blaze, the Bringham Fire was declared 100% contained on July 29, 2020. The suppression cost to date for the Bringham Fire is $9.4 million.
Monsoon showers have recently blanketed the Bringham Fire, and the potential for flooding has been analyzed. A Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team completed their evaluation of the potential for post-wildfire effects and prescribed emergency response actions to protect the land quickly and effectively.
BAER assessment teams are staffed by specially trained professionals representing multiple disciplines who evaluate the burned area and prescribe specific actions, such as deploying an excavator to create water bars along the fire-containment dozer lines to mitigate soil erosion. Additional post-wildfire analysis focused on potential impacts to threatened and endangered species, cultural and heritage sites, natural resources, and recreation sites near the burned area.
The public is advised to be cautious when visiting areas downstream of the Bringham Fire burned area as it is now more vulnerable to flash flooding and debris flows—ash, sand, silt, rocks and woody material. Rainfall runoff normally absorbed by soil and vegetation may runoff extremely quickly in a burned area because the soil is damaged, and the vegetation no longer exists. Recreationalist must be prepared to move to higher ground when chances of rain exist. For flash flooding alerts and safety information, visit the National Weather Service website: https://www.weather.gov/safety/flood. The temporary area closure around the fire remains in effect for the protection of public health and safety.
Fire information can be found at the following links:
• InciWeb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6747/
• Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/apachesitgreavesnfs/
• Temporary Area Closure Order: https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd749041.pdf