11 A.M. MYRTLE FIRE UPDATE
Published: Sunday, July 22nd, 2012
Location: 1 mile east of Pringle, SD Start Date: July 19, 2012
Size: 9,075 acres Percent Contained: 20
Cause: Under Investigation Total Personnel: 569
Resources on Scene: 6 Type 1 hand crews, 6 Type 2 hand crews, 64 engines, 2 dozers, 9 water tenders, 6 Type 1 helicopters, 1 Type 2 helicopter, 3 Type 3 helicopters, fixed wing support and overhead personnel
Current Situation: Overnight, portions of the fire received additional rain, however the amount varied greatly across the fire area and ranged from 0.2” to over 1.0”. Rain on the northern portion of the fire helped to strengthen existing containment lines. On the southern end of the fire, crews observed active burning within the fire perimeter overnight as the amount of precipitation in that area was limited. Today, firefighters plan to improve containment lines on the northern perimeter of the fire and will continue constructing fire line along the western perimeter. On the eastern and southern parts of the fire, crews are planning to conduct a firing operation that was delayed yesterday due to weather and safety considerations.
There will be a community meeting tonight at 7:00 p.m. at the community building by the fire station in Pringle.
Information Officers will be available for media tours at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. today at the staging area in Pringle. For information on other fires in the Black Hills area, please contact Great Plains Fire Information at (605) 923-8868 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Weather: Scattered thunderstorms are anticipated to continue this afternoon and persist through the first part of next week. Temperatures will be in the 90’s today with a minimum relative humidity of 30% and increasing in the afternoon with the development of the expected thunderstorms. Winds will be light and variable throughout the day.
Evacuation: Fire officials worked through the night with Custer and Fall River County emergency managers, as well as local power companies, to restore power in areas that have been without power and water.
The evacuation notice for the west side of Highway 89 from the Black Hills National Forest boundary to the Minnekahta Junction has been rescinded. The public has been allowed to return to their homes west of Highway 89 according to Custer and Fall River County officials. The voluntary evacuation in the Apple Valley subdivision was lifted on July 20th.
33 residences north of Highway 385 along Beaver Creek Road and along Rifle Pit Road were evacuated on Thursday, July 19th. An additional 242 residences were evacuated in the in the Argyle Road area on Friday, July 20th. Shelters for evacuated residents have been established at the Custer Middle School and the Mueller Center in Hot Springs.
Closures: The Black Hills National Forest has issued a Temporary Area Closure for the Myrtle Fire area affecting the areas east and southeast of Pringle. Highway 385 is closed from Pringle to Wind Cave National Park. Beaver Creek Road is closed at Highway 385. Rifle Pit Road is closed at Highway 385. Cold Springs Road is closed at the cemetery. Argyle Road is closed east of Highway 89 to Highway 385 north of Hot Springs. Wind Cave National Park remains closed until further notice.
Public Safety: Smoke may impact residents and visitors in the area of the fire and those traveling along Hwy 89. Please use caution when driving in areas of smoke.
Special Prevention Message: Stage II Fire & Smoking Restrictions are in place on the Black Hills National Forest. Some of the prohibited acts include building, maintaining or using a fire, campfire, or charcoal grill; smoking except within a building or vehicle; and operating an internal combustion engine without an appropriate spark arresting device. On public land, the use of fireworks is always prohibited. For complete information on Stage II Fire & Smoking Restrictions, please visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/stelprdb5378450.pdf.
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