As of 1:00 pm on 7/31/18, the 416 Fire is 100% contained. This does not mean that the fire is controlled. Hot spots will continue to smolder in the interior for weeks to come. It is going to take a significant moisture event over the whole burn scar to completely put the fire out. Due to recent weather events, increasing greening in the higher elevations and lack of observed smoke during monitoring, we are confident that the fire will stay within its current containment lines. The area around the Fire is closed to all public entry for safety reasons. Hazards include burning hot spots, debris flows, flooding and falling burned trees.


The National Incident Management Organization team (NIMO) that has been managing the #416Fire since June 22nd, will be transitioning the fire back to the San Juan National Forest on Tuesday, July 10th. The last day for posting this Facebook site will be Monday, July 9th. Please “like” the San Juan National Forest Facebook page in anticipation of this transition at https://www.facebook.com/SanJuanNF/. You can also contact San Juan National Forest Public Affairs Officer (PAO) at (970) 422-2671

Information about the 416 Fire (if there is any), as well as information on any new fires, will be posted on the San Juan Facebook page. The 416 Fire Information phone numbers 970-403-5326 (public) and 844-672-5100 (media) will not be available after Monday, July 9th.

For information on the potential flooding or the Burned Area Emergency Response team’s report and conclusions, please contact the La Plata County. You can also like and follow their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/LaPlataCounty/


416 Fire Morning Update
Thursday, June 28, 2018

Location: 13 Miles N. of Durango, CO
Size: 37,488 acres
Percent Contained: 37% Start Date: June, 1, 2018.
Cause: Under Investigation
Cost to Date: $24,700,000

Total Personnel: 351
Resources Include: 2 Type 1 hand crews, 4 Type 2 hand crews, 15 engines, 1 dozer
Helicopters: One Type 1, one Type 2, and one Type 3

Weather: Incident meteorologists have issued a Red Flag Warning for the fire area due to an increase in daytime temperatures, strong southwest surface winds and a reduction of relative humidity associated with an approaching high pressure ridge over the incident. A Red Flag warning is issued to inform firefighters of local conditions that are primed for fire combustion and rapid spread throughout the fire area which may lead to dangerous fire growth. In addition to the Red Flag warning for today, a Fire Weather Watch has been issued for Friday because of continued hot and dry conditions over the next 24-36 hours.

With the forecasted hot and dry weather and change in wind direction to the southwest over the next 24 hours, the local communities may see an increase in fire activity to the north and northwest. As the 416 Fire continues to consume fuels within the Hermosa Creek Wilderness south of the Purgatory Ski Resort and along the southwestern perimeter, the probability of an increase in visible smoke to communities along the Highway 550 is greatly increased.

Current Situation: Crews made excellent progress over the past 24 hours as they successfully conducted burnout operations along the hand line to Forest Road 171 south of the Buck Creek Drainage on the southwest portion of the fire. The reduction of ground fuel will allow fire managers to safely mitigate future fire growth along the Junction Creek corridor in advance of changing weather conditions associated with the current high pressure system established to the east of the incident.

Today, crews will continue to improve and strengthen the existing fireline north of the successful burnout operations conducted yesterday on Division H. Beginning early in the day, crews will begin to introduce ground fire along Forest Road 171 as they move towards the No Buck Creek Drainage. Crews will utilize a variety of aerial support include water dropping helicopters and retardant aircraft that will assist in cooling the fire’s edge. In addition to water dropping helicopters, the local Mesa Verde Helicopter will aid with the planned firing operations with the use of a plastic sphere dispenser which will allow fire managers to safely create ground fire in steep an inaccessible terrain in Division H.

With the current Red Flag Warning over the entire fire area and firing operations being conducted on the southwestern portion of the fire, the public will see an increase in both smoke and aerial resources during the operational period today.

Fire crews will continue to patrol and secure the fireline along the Highway 550 corridor today. Homeowners along the Durango and Silverton Railway will see fire crews and track vehicle chippers clearing and chipping brush piles that are near the train tracks. This fuel reduction and pile chipping will reduce the potential for future ignitions along the rail corridor.

Fire information will continue to be distributed along Highway 550 at Honeyville and Needles and at the helicopter dipsite on county road 205 during daytime operations.

Closures and Public Safety: For up to date information visit www.cotrip.org. La Plata County’s 416 Fire Interactive Map is at https://bit.ly/416fire.
National Incident Management Organization – Joe Reinarz, Incident Commander
Information Center: 970-403-5326 from 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m daily.
Website for 416 Fire: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5822
Email: 2018_cosjf_416@firenet.gov

416 Fire Update- June 26, 2018 8:00 am

Fire Statistics:
Location: 13 miles north of Durango, CO Start Date: June 1, 2018
Size: 35,195 acres (234 acres growth) Percent Contained: 36
Total Personnel: 459 Cause: Under Investigation
Resources Include: 5 Type 1 hand crews, 5 Type 2 hand crews, 15 engines, 5 dozers, 1 water tender.
Helicopters: One Type 1, one Type 2, and one Type 3, and one fixed wing aircraft.

Weather: Continued hot and dry conditions will persist throughout the day over the entire fire area. The potential for an increase in fire activity is likely today due to a forecasted rise in daytime temperatures, decreased relative humidity and accompanying daytime winds. The increased fire activity and downslope winds in the morning will increase the chance of smoke dispersal along Highway 550 and may have an impact to the communities and public along the highway corridor. Temperature recovery overnight will be minimal with predicted lows in the fifties, while the pattern of strong downslope winds will continue throughout the night.

Current Situation: Today, firefighters will take advantage of the increase in temperatures, lower relative humidity and local geography to secure and improve existing fire line while conducting burnout operations along the Junction Creek (FR 171) corridor. Firefighters will utilize offensive suppression tactics to remove fuels in order to slow and control the advancing fire front along the southwestern fire perimeter on Division H above the Junction Creek road system. Firefighters will utilize forest road 171 as the primary fireline during firing operations. The introduction of fire by the hotshots crews and aerial resources along the southwest perimeter will aid in the removal of the ground fuels which will allow fire managers the opportunity to slow the progress of the fire to the southwest while meeting the incident objectives.

With burnout operations planned during the operational window today, the public will see an increase in smoke and ash in communities near the fire area. Residents along the Fall Creek and Junction Creek corridors will see the greatest impact of smoke as firefighters will be utilizing the Junction Creek road as a geographic barrier for firing operations. With the use of aerial resources to support firefighters on the ground, the public will also see an increase in aviation resources throughout the day. Helicopters will continue to utilize the water dipping site along county road 205, approximately 5 miles north of Chapman Lake. The public is encouraged to limit access to this area during aerial operations to minimize the impact to mission objectives and firefighter support the aerial resources provide.

Fire crews will also continue to be visible along the Highway 550 corridor. Crews in that area will continue to improve and secure the existing fireline while aiding the community with fuel reduction near residences. Crews will continue to chip vegetation piles created during fire suppression activities in that area during the onset of the incident. The public is encouraged to contact firecrews working in their area if vegetation piles have not been addressed and removed. Additional fire information may be obtained along Highway 550 at Honeyville and Needles during daytime operations.

Closures and Public Safety: For up to date information visit www.cotrip.org. La Plata County’s 416 Fire Interactive Map is at https://bit.ly/416fire.

National Incident Management Organization – Joe Reinarz, Incident Commander
Information Center: 970-403-5326
Hours of operation: 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Website for 416 Fire: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5822
Email: 2018_cosjf_416@firenet.gov


416 Fire Update – June 25, 2018

Fire Statistics:
Location: 13 miles north of Durango, CO Start Date: June 1, 2018
Size: 34,962 acres (584 acres growth) Percent Contained: 37
Total Personnel: 475 Cause: Under Investigation
Resources Include: 5 Type 1 hand crews, 5 Type 2 hand crews, 16 engines, 5 dozers, 1 water tenders
Helicopters: One Type 1, one Type 2, and one Type 3, (as well as one fixed wing aircraft)

Special notes: As a reminder, drones cause danger to aircraft and they are not allowed in the fire perimeter. Residents are encouraged to please report any drone activity to local law enforcement.

Weather: Fire weather conditions will remain near critical again today. Warm temperatures (77°-83°), low humidity values (13-16%), and poor overnight humidity recoveries are expected to continue. Yesterday, winds encouraged fire growth as they gusted to 40 mph in some areas. Winds will diminish slightly today, coming from the west-northwest at 6-10 mph with gusts to 20 mph. This slight decrease in winds is enough to keep the area out of Red Flag conditions today.

Current Situation: The fire grew 584 acres overnight. It has been seven days since the fire has had precipitation. Fuels continue to dry and will react to small environmental changes (wind speed, wind direction, or humidity). When weather conditions, susceptible fuel, and topographical conditions align, fire behavior has potential for rapid and intense increase.

Yesterday in Division H, two smoke columns were visible – one from Clear Creek and one from Hope and Deer Creek areas. Westerly winds sent significant amounts of smoke down the Hermosa drainage into Hermosa and Honeyville. Fire behavior is expected to increase in both of these locations today, becoming most active after 1 p.m. There will be visible smoke with this increased activity. Hotshot crews are present and monitoring near the indirect fireline. As the fire creeps toward the area of Junction Creek Rd, fire managers are assessing the need for future burnout operations on the west side.

The 416 Fire is an evolving fire. Much patience is required during monitoring, operational planning, and tactical decisions in order to keep firefighters safe in terrain that is steep, rugged, and often inaccessible. While complete suppression is the ultimate goal, it is not an immediately obtainable one. Fire managers wish residents to know that the fire is not out, and it will not be out until the arrival of significant moisture. Currently, however, the fire is behaving in a predictable way, allowing managers to observe and plan intentionally. Correct action at this time involves using the right resources, in the right places, at the right times. Residents are not currently under threat, and often the visible aspects of the fire appear more threatening and ominous than they actually are. For example, flames that were present during the daytime become more visible at night. Smoke columns on the west side may become quite large, but they are farther from US 550 and structures than they appear.

In the past few weeks, there were significant amounts of mitigation performed on roads and around houses, leaving many slash piles as a result. Crews have worked for many days to chip these slash collections. As crews go home and new crews arrive, every effort is made to communicate all locations of slash piles. There may, however, still be piles in need of chipping, and residents should know that crews are working to locate and chip all piles.

Closures and Public Safety: For up to date information visit www.cotrip.org.La Plata County’s 416 Fire Interactive Map is at https://bit.ly/416fire.

There are still countless recreational opportunities available and southwestern Colorado is open for business. Please see these websites for tourism and recreational opportunities: La Plata County: http://co.laplata.co.us/ Official Durango Tourism site: https://www.durango.org/ Durango Business Improvement District http://downtowndurango.org/ Silverton, CO Chamber of Commerce: http://www.silvertoncolorado.com/ and other area chambers of commerce.

National Incident Management Organization – Joe Reinarz, Incident Commander
Information Center: 970-403-5326
Hours of operation: 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Website for 416 Fire: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5822
Email: 2018_cosjf_416@firenet.gov


416 Fire Update June 20, 2018 (8 a.m.)

Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team – Todd Pechota, Incident Commander
Information Center: 970-403-5326
Hours of operation: 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Website for 416 Fire: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5822
Email: 2018_cosjf_416@firenet.gov

 

Special notes: All residents evacuated during the 416 Fire have now been able to return to their homes and businesses. (Falls Creek Ranch and High Meadows subdivisions remain under pre-evacuation.)

The normal time an Incident Management Team is assigned to a fire is 14 days, after which they return home to rest and prepare for their next assignment. The Rocky Mountain Team will reach this time frame in the latter part of this week. An orderly transition will occur with another highly qualified team, which will then lead the nearly 700 firefighters who remain on the incident. Fire managers are currently planning this transition, and more information will follow as it becomes available. Paramount in this planning is ensuring that the fire, our firefighters, and residents of local communities remain in good hands.

Weather: Relative humidity continues decreasing today, possibly as low as 10%. Temperature will be highs 78-81, lows 44-47. Winds are from the northwest at 8-12 mph with gusts near 25 mph. The Haines Index will remain at 6. By Thursday, isolated afternoon and evening thunderstorms may arrive. As the week goes on, a warming trend continues and humidity levels decrease. If wind speeds also increase, this combination may lead to Red Flag Warnings.

Current Situation: Moisture amounts received over the past few days curtailed active burning for the time being. Today, fire behavior potential remains low, but will rise throughout the week. Surface fuels have reheated enough to support some combustion; this tendency will increase in the coming days. The west side of the fire is most likely to see fire spread first. Residents should be aware that smoke will be visible as fuels smolder in already burned areas, and some fuels could kindle with visible flame. The 416 Fire will not be completely cool until the arrival of monsoons.

Branch I (Divisions H, D, A, E, F, and G):
Direct line on the south perimeter is now complete. Today, hotshot crews on the Falls Creek Ridge will improve the indirect line that ties from the Junction Creek Road southeast into the direct line. As operations are completed, crews will hold and patrol until critical weather periods are over.

Branch III (Divisions X, Y and Z): In Division X, crews are cleaning up previously cut logs. Firefighters in Division X, Y and Z are moving out equipment and looking for rehabilitation opportunities.

Division II: The Burro Fire is producing a separate update. See: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5834/

Closures and Public Safety: U.S. Highway 550 is open without an escort. For up to date information visit www.cotrip.org. For evacuation information, please contact the La Plata County Emergency Operations Center at 970-385-8700 or visit www.co.laplata.co.us. La Plata County’s 416 Fire Interactive Map is at https://bit.ly/416fire.

There are still countless recreational opportunities available and southwestern Colorado is open for business. Please see these websites for tourism and recreational opportunities:
La Plata County: http://co.laplata.co.us/
Official Durango Tourism site: https://www.durango.org/
Durango Business Improvement District http://downtowndurango.org/
Silverton, CO Chamber of Commerce: http://www.silvertoncolorado.com/and other area chambers of commerce

Fire Statistics:
Location: 13 miles north of Durango, CO
Start Date: June 1, 2018
Size: 34,177 acres Percent Contained: 35
Total Personnel: 678 Cause: Under Investigation
Resources Include: 7 Type 1 hand crews, 4 Type 2 hand crews, 21 engines, 9 dozers, 2 water tenders
Helicopters: Two Type 1 (including the Blackhawk), two Type 2, and two Type 3, (as well as two fixed wing aircraft)


Update 6/18/18 10:45am: 416 Fire Update

Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team – Todd Pechota, Incident Commander
Information Center: 970-403-5326
Hours of operation: 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Website for 416 Fire: https://www.inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5822
Email: 2018_cosjf_416@firenet.gov

June 18, 2018 (8:00 a.m.)

Special notes: Yesterday, evacuated residents and businesses in the Hermosa area returned to homes and businesses.

Weather: Warmer and drier conditions begin today. Temperatures will be mid to upper 70s with minimum humidity at 18%. Winds will be 4-8 mph with gusts up to 22 mph. This warming, drying trend will continue through the week with relative humidity values moving into the lower teens by Thursday. Isolated thunderstorms will return on Thursday.

Current Situation: Fire behavior will remain limited today with minimal to no growth. Much of the fire is now in a state of smoldering and creeping, and active flames have been infrequent. Today, however, starts a weather trend that will quickly dry out fuels and re-elevate fire potential as the week goes on. Activity tends to increase soonest on exposed areas such as ridge tops. While the threat to people and values has been significantly reduced, it is important to remember that the fire is not yet “out.” The San Juan Forest is still in an exceptional drought, with an overall deficit of approximately 5” of rain. The fire will not likely be fully cold until the arrival of monsoons.

Branch I (Divisions H, D, A, E, F, and G):
Weather and conditions did not allow eight out of the nine hotshot crews to get to the Falls Creek ridge yesterday. Today, two hotshot crews will be flown onto the ridge where they will construct direct line at the south edge of the fire, wrapping around to the northwest, and two more crews will hike in to that area to also construct direct line. As roads dry out, four more hotshot crews will hike up and join the crew already working on indirect line off the Junction Creek Rd, for a total of five crews working there. Crews will continue to assess protection needs for the structures at the end of Junction Creek Rd. There will be nearly 200 firefighters working on the ridge. While the risk of fire itself has decreased, these crews will still face considerably challenging conditions. A National Guard Blackhawk Helicopter with medivac capabilities stands by in case of medical emergencies.

Crews in Divisions E and F will continue to improve alternate, indirect firelines toward Junction Creek.

Branch III (Divisions X, Y and Z): Crews are backhauling equipment, monitoring the fire line, and starting to identify rehabilitation opportunities in these areas (as well as in Division A).

Division II: The Burro Fire is producing a separate update. See: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5834/

Closures and Public Safety: U.S. Highway 550 is open without an escort. For up to date information visit www.cotrip.org. For evacuation statuses, please contact the La Plata County Emergency Operations Center at 970-385-8700 or visit www.co.laplata.co.us. La Plata County’s 416 Fire Interactive Map is at https://bit.ly/416fire. Here, you can pinpoint whether you are in an evacuation or pre-evacuation zone, as well as your proximity to the fire’s perimeter.

There are still countless recreational opportunities available and southwestern Colorado is open for business. Please see these websites for tourism and recreational opportunities:
La Plata County: http://co.laplata.co.us/
Official Durango Tourism site: https://www.durango.org/
Durango Business Improvement District http://downtowndurango.org/
Silverton, CO Chamber of Commerce: http://www.silvertoncolorado.com/ and other area chambers of commerce

Fire Statistics:
Location: 13 miles north of Durango, CO Start Date: June 1, 2018
Size: 34,161 acres Percent Contained: 30
Total Personnel: 1,087 Cause: Under Investigation
Resources Include: 11 Type 1 hand crews, 13 Type 2 hand crews, 53 engines, 13 dozers, 5 water tenders
Helicopters: Three Type 1 (including Blackhawk), two Type 2, and two Type 3, (as well as two fixed wing aircraft)

416 Fire Website
416 Fire Facebook Page

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