Tuesday, July 17, 2007, 8:00 p.m.
Contact: (775) 748-4141 or (775) 748-4000, 753-0386
Elko County Fires, Update #5
NEW FIRES IN ELKO COUNTY
Elko, Nev. – A rash of new fires on Tuesday on top of the 46 fire starts from Monday have stretched fire fighting resources.
Fourteen new fires started in Elko County today caused by lightning. Despite the assist from scattered rain, sixteen fires from yesterday and today are still burning for a total of about 55,000 acres.
The Hepworth Fire located about 10 miles northwest of Wells, Nevada and the Stevens Fire in Starr Valley about 20 miles west of Wells will be managed by a Type II Incident Management Team (Saleen) as the Hepworth Complex beginning at 6 am Wednesday morning. The Hepworth Fire is estimated at 25,000 acres and the Stevens Fire is estimated at 6,000 acres. Extensive structure protection has been in place on both the Hepworth and Stevens Fires and no homes were lost. Fire fighters made significant progress on the Stevens Fire.
The HD Fire about 20 miles northeast of Wells has burned an estimated 6,000 acres and is being managed by a Type I Incident Management Team (Broyles) who was assigned to last week’s Highway 93 Complex near Jackpot. The HD Fire is now being managed as the Winecup Complex and includes the 9,000 acre Scott Creek Fire burning 12 miles west of Jackpot.
The Twin Bridges Fire about 20 miles southwest of Spring Creek has burned about 2,000 acres and threatened structures. The Bob’s Flat 3 Fire has burned approximately 8,000 acres west of Carlin both north and south of I-80. I-80 is currently closed.
The Camp Creek Basin Fire about 20 miles west of Elko is estimated at 2,000 acres and the Petan Fire about 100 miles northwest of Elko is estimated at 1,500 acres. Eight smaller fires are scattered in Elko County. Twelve new fires started and were contained today including the Pleasant Valley Fire which re-ignited in high winds and caused a great deal of smoke in Spring Creek.
“It’s been an extremely active day in Elko County,” said Bureau of Land Management Fire Information Officer Joe Freeland. “Every fire fighter resource we could lay our hands on was fighting fire in Elko County today. This fire-causing weather has been some of the worst we’ve had in some time. In the past 36 hours, there have been approximately 9,000 lightning strikes in Elko County alone. Lightning combined with dry vegetation and temperatures over 90 is a dangerous situation.”
“Despite the sheer magnitude of fires, there have been no evacuations in Elko County, no homes lost, and no injuries. We’ve had many reports of citizens putting out small fires before the engines arrive and ranchers who volunteered to monitor fires so fire fighters could move on to the next one. To everyone, we say Thank You! Getting through fire season takes everyone’s cooperation,” Freeland added.
Early detection is critical to keeping fires small and if people see a fire start, they’re urged to report them at (775) 738-FIRE, (775) 748-4000, or 911.
Fire restrictions in northern and central Nevada will be in effect until further notice. Lands involved include federal, state, tribal, and the Humboldt, Pershing, Lander, Eureka, Elko, Esmeralda, and Nye County Fire Protection Districts and portions of Washoe, Lyon, Churchhill, and White Pine counties. For more specific information go to: http://www.fire.blm.gov/restrictions.htm, http://www.fs.fed.us/r4/htnf/, http://www.forestry.state.nv.us, www.nifc.gov, http://gacc.nifc.gov/wgbc.