For Immediate Release
June 26, 2016, 8 a.m.
Contact: Saddle Fire Information (435) 590-2736 or (435) 680-0354 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dixie National Forest - Saddle Fire Update
PINE VALLEY, Utah – The Saddle Fire grew to 1,234 acres Sunday, while air tankers and heavy helicopters used 22,000 gallons of retardant Saturday to prevent the fire from moving onto the southern face of the Saddle Mountain, helping firefighters focus on suppressing the fire before it can impact the town of Pine Valley.
The aerial bombardment painted a line of retardant on the south ridges similar to what was done on the southwest portion of the mountain a week ago.
Additionally, helicopters dropped water directly on the fire to slow it down and giving firefighters an added edge in preparing suppression efforts, in an ongoing effort to confine the fire to as little of the mountain as possible. With the fire burning in areas filled with unnecessary risk and hazards to firefighters, fire managers believe a significant moisture event is needed for multiple days to extinguish the blaze.
Fire crews work day and night, as personnel grew to 625 firefighters and supporting resources. While day crews improve fuel breaks and scout the terrain, night crews, including engines and hotshots patrol areas threatened by the fire, prepared to pick up spot fires and encroaching flames if needed.
Property owners are still asked by the Washington County Sheriff’s Office to voluntarily evacuate Pine Valley, limiting the number of people in the area threatened by fire. Fire crews identified 500 properties that are threatened.
Those that do not own property in Pine Valley are asked to stay out of the area. The Pine Valley Recreation Area in the Dixie National Forest remains under an area closure to all uses until the order is rescinded (http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/article/4794/31098/). Those wanting more information about the closure should contact the Dixie National Forest.
The Saddle Fire began June 13 with lightning on Saddle Mountain in the Pine Valley Mountain Wilderness of the Dixie National Forest. The fire started approximately 2.5 miles south west of Pine Valley, Utah. It is burning in heavy, dead and downed timber and brush and is surrounded by very steep, inaccessible, rocky terrain.
A fire information center has been established at the Pine Valley Fire Station. For further information please follow the Dixie National Forest on Facebook, Twitter, and InciWeb at http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4794/. Residents may also sign up for Everbridge to receive notifications from the Washington County Emergency Alert System by http://911register.com/. Those experiencing problems with online registration may call (435) 634-5700 for assistance.
FIRE BEHAVIOR: The fire remains most active in the Lloyd and Forsyth canyons, burning mostly in the downed logs and underbrush in the conifer stands. Fire growth will continue to the east, northeast and southeast in Lloyd Canyon with limited spread to the northwest and west. Areas with live, green oak and mahogany are limiting the spread of the fire.