Current Situation: For the third Monday in a row, crews are working in extreme heat and steep terrain to contain the Apple Fire. On Sunday, containment rose to 95%. Progress was made by crews, including the Big Bear Hotshots on the northeast edge of the fire in the San Gorgonio Wilderness. There is a slight chance of thunderstorms today. Crews continue to put out hotspots and smoke, patrol the fire perimeter, and to repair impacts to the land. Within the fire’s interior, pockets of burning vegetation may generate smoke.
An Excessive Heat Warning has been extended by the National Weather Service, effective until 10 pm Thursday, August 20. Dangerously hot conditions are expected for the Inland Empire. More information about this warning can be found at the National Weather Service website. Firefighter safety is the top priority. Firefighters continue to follow COVID-19 precautions, including wearing masks, practicing social distancing, using hand sanitizers, meeting outside, washing hands and sanitizing workspaces.
Suppression repair on Yucaipa Ridge is nearly completed. Recently burned areas are at a greater risk of mudflows and flash floods. Fires eliminate vegetation that can hold soil in place and charred ground may be unable to absorb water. Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) efforts are focused on the protection of human life, safety, and property. Rapid burn assessments identify areas that have increased potential for floods and mudflows. For more information, please visit the Apple Post-Fire BAER InciWeb page.
Safety Message: It is still early in the Southern California fire season. Now is the time to prepare defensible space around your home. Defensible space is needed to slow the spread of wildfire and protect the firefighters defending homes in your neighborhood. These efforts can preserve firefighting resources, reduce the need for firefighters to move throughout the country, and minimize exposure to and transmission of COVID-19 among incident personnel and communities served. You can learn more about defensible space at the CAL FIRE website Ready for Wildfire.
One easy and potentially life-saving task that all residents can do right now is to sign up for the emergency alert system in their county. These systems help public safety officials to provide critical updates, such as evacuation notifications, as quickly as possible.
San Bernardino County Residents
Telephone Emergency Notification System
Riverside County Residents
Closures: The San Gorgonio Wilderness is closed to all use until further notice. The order prohibits all entry into the San Gorgonio Wilderness and some adjacent areas. Additionally, all Forest Service recreation areas in the Forest Falls area are closed. Fire restrictions have increased across the San Bernardino National Forest. Please refer to the Forest web page at https://www.fs.usda.gov/sbnf for additional details.
A portion of the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail is closed. Due to closures in both the San Bernardino National Forest and the Bureau of Land Management, the PCT is closed to all traffic between the Cottonwood Trailhead, near the community of San Gorgonio and Forest Road 1N01 (Pipes Canyon Road).
There is a temporary flight restriction over the fire and vicinity. It is illegal to fly drones within the restricted area. Remember, “When you fly, we can’t”.