Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Wildfire in northern Arizona grows significantly
First Published May 24 2014 03:22 pm • Last Updated May 24 2014 03:22 pm

Flagstaff, Ariz. • A wildfire burning in rugged terrain in a northern Arizona canyon grew significantly because of fires intentionally set by crews to rob the blaze of its natural forest fuels, officials said Saturday.

Crews have mostly completed burnout operations on the key northern flank of the Slide Fire and are preparing to make similar protection efforts on the fire’s western end. The burnout operations conducted Friday night by fire crews contributed to the heavy smoke over Sedona and Flagstaff.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

"They are making progress. Having the humidity and cooler temperatures was certainly very helpful. But we are by no means done yet," Coronado National Forest Service information officer Gerry Perry said.

There’s a chance of thunderstorms Saturday in the area that could bring much-needed moisture. But if such a storm doesn’t produce any rain, its winds could fan the fire.

The size of the human-caused fire had reached 16 square miles by Saturday morning. It had grown nearly 5 square miles since the latest report on its size.

It’s burning around Oak Creek Canyon, a scenic recreation area along the highway between Sedona and Flagstaff that would normally be filed with tourists as Memorial Day approaches. Slide Rock State Park, one of the most-visited tourist spots in Arizona, has been closed.

The goals for fire managers are to protect the 300 structures threatened in Oak Creek Canyon, keep the fire from pushing into the communities of Forest Highlands and Kachina Village to the east, and minimize the potential for flooding.

Perry said crews working Friday night also focused on building protection lines to handle a finger of fire that took off in west Oak Creek. There were no homes in the area, and crews have made solid progress in protecting that area, Perry said.

Crews cleared out brush and conducted burnout operations to protect a power line that supplies electricity to Flagstaff.

Evacuations remain in place for a 2-mile stretch north of Slide Rock. The fire was 3 to 3 ½ miles away from the residential areas of Forest Highlands and Kachina Village, where 3,200 residents remained under pre-evacuation warnings.


story continues below
story continues below

No homes have been destroyed. The fire is 5 percent contained.



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.