Tuolumne County, CA — The Rim Fire is now 160,980 acres and is 20% contained. 3,752 fire fighters are battling the blaze. The cost to fight the flames is at a scorching $27.2 million.
Below are the Forest Fire Officials remarks on the Rim Fire and the strategies on fighting the flames:
Fire officials say the flames became very active early in the day. Near Duckwall Ridge, the fire spotted across the line with crews working to control the spot. The fire also crossed the 3N01 road in Reynolds Creek, prompting an expansion of the evacuation advisory in the Highway 108 corridor. Fire crews also were working to contain a spot fire in the southeast portion of the fire as it crossed to the south of Highway 120 at Ackerson Flat. Firefighters were successful in completing dozer line below Pilot Ridge; effectively slowing the fire’s spread in this location. Tonight crews will continue to work the three spot fires, as well as continue construction on contingency lines and provide structure protection throughout the fire.
Fire officials say very fast running surface fire quickly transitioned into sustained crown runs and long range spotting on the fires eastern and southeastern perimeters located inside as well as advancing towards Yosemite National Park. Fire activity was moderate over the Southwest and western perimeters. Fire became fairly active in the early afternoon along the northern perimeter with spot fires challenging suppression resources and requiring heavy support from aerial resources.
The Rim Fire incident has exhibited large fire growth on Monday. Rapid fire growth and extreme fire behavior is hampering suppression efforts. Fire Officials say significant utilization and reliance upon aerial resources with heavy air tankers including MAFFs and DC-10 air tankers is occurring with structure defense. They are also being used in preparation of locations in advance of the fires spread. The air power is also helping the control of spot fires and slowing the fires advancement through inaccessible terrain to ground resources to allow time for indirect line construction to be completed. Type 1 helicopters are providing point protection and cooling areas where direct line construction can be achieved safely. Fire Officials say the extremely dry fuels, high winds and potential for long-range spotting remain a significant concern.
An evacuation advisory has been extended on the Highway 108 corridor from Long Barn to Pinecrest. Those areas already under advisory status include Tuolumne City, Ponderosa Hills and the southside of the Highway 108 corridor, from Soulsbyville to Mi Wuk – Sugar Pine.
Mandatory evacuations are still in place south of Highway 120 and north of Old Yosemite Road in Mariposa County. Structure defense is in place for this area of the fire by ground and aerial resources.