2:30 P.M. UPDATE: MYRTLE FIRE
Published: Saturday, July 21st, 2012
Location: 1 mile east of Pringle, SD
Start Date: July 19, 2012
Size: 9,075 acres
Percent Contained: 15
Cause: Under Investigation
Total Personnel: 249
Resources Include: 3 Type 1 hand crews, 3 Type 2 hand crews, 33 engines, 4 dozers, 5 water tenders, and overhead personnel
Air Resources: 6 helicopters and fixed wing support
Current Situation: The Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team, led by Incident Commander Bill Hahnenberg, assumed command of the Myrtle Fire at 6:00 a.m. today. Firefighters worked hard yesterday and overnight to contain 15% of the fire on the north side of the fire perimeter. The eastern area of the fire received up to 0.3” of rain yesterday, however much of the fire did not receive any rain and will continue to burn actively. An increase in relative humidity is helping reduce fire behavior and intensity for the first part of the day. Today, firefighters will continue to improve and increase containment on the north side of the fire and assess opportunities for containment on the south side of the fire. There are currently 249 personnel assigned to the fire and additional resources will be arriving throughout the day. Public 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. A community meeting will be held in Pringle on Sunday at 7:00 p.m. (location will be announced in tomorrow’s release).
Weather: Weather as forecasted for today will be similar to yesterday. Temperatures are expected to reach 90 degrees with chance of showers and thunderstorms anticipated in the afternoon.
Evacuation: Initially 33 residences north of Highway 385 along Beaver Creek Road and along Rifle Pit Road were evacuated. Residences affected include those in the Bowman Ridge, Bowman Road, Sherry Drive, Big Horn Run and Apple Valley subdivisions. On Friday, an additional 242 residences were evacuated in the in the Argyle Road area. The voluntary evacuation in the Apple Valley subdivision was lifted yesterday. Shelters for evacuated residents have been set up 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. On public land, use of fireworks is prohibited as well. 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 at the Loops on Highway 89, and on the Hot Springs side on Highway 385. Wind Cave National Park is 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, use of fireworks is always prohibited. For complete information on Stage II Fire & Smoking Restrictions, please visithttp://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/stelprdb5378450.pdf.
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