WILLIAMS – Fire officials on the Williams Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest have carefully considered their options and have elected to actively work toward containment of the Government Fire. Smoke impacts to rural communities have been consistent throughout the summer months and with the fall schedule for prescribed burning still ahead, the decision to limit smoke exposure to both the public and firefighters was made.
“Although this was another great opportunity to have natural fire play a beneficial role in improving forest health in our community, we recognize that there are still other important issues to consider” said Jeremy Human South Zone Fire Management Officer. “Air quality is certainly one of our priorities and after the amount of smoke our communities have already endured this year, we felt this was the best decision at this time”.
The Government Fire, discovered on August 4, has been moderately growing near the top of Government Hill just south of Spring Valley and north of Parks near the Sanderson Pass area. Firefighters will begin constructing control lines today and will continue to take actions to reach full containment over the weekend. Rain is forecasted over the next few days and is expected to help stop any further progression of the fires movement.
Smoke will continue to be noticeable at times. Light effects may drift into the surrounding rural areas during the late evening and early morning hours but is expected to diminish rapidly.
The lightning caused Government fire is currently just over 6 acres at this time.
Motorists are reminded to always use caution when driving near areas where fire is occurring and be aware of unexpected conditions when smoke is present.
Additional fire information for the Kaibab National Forest can be obtained from InciWeb at: inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5483/ or call the Kaibab National Forest Fire Information Phone Line at (928) 635-8311; Text Message – text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404.