For information about the Gatlinburg / Sevier County fires, please scroll posts on WKRK's Facebook and check out the local media outlets in the Knoxville, TN area. WKRK sends our thoughts and prayers to those who have lost so much in this tragedy.
North Carolina Forest Service staff are assessing the need to continue the burn ban as rainfall moves through Western North Carolina. Residents are asked to remain vigilant as the burn ban is still in place at this time. No open fires, such as campfires, woody debris or trash burning are allowed. Updates will be posted onto the ncjic.blogspot.com.
AIR QUALITY INFORMATION
Conditions: Particle pollution is within the Code Green range in most of the state. Particle pollution may be in the Code Yellow range due to smoke downwind (mainly north) of active and smoldering wildfires. For a display of the most recent air quality conditions throughout the remainder of this afternoon, please visit the US EPA's AIRNOW web site.
General Forecast Discussion: Rain and higher winds will return Wednesday as a cold front pushes through the state. The front will push through the mountains by mid-afternoon and into the Piedmont toward evening. Winds will be gusty out of the south/southwest ahead of the front and will turn out of the west behind the front. Smoke from active and smoldering wildfires within the state will be carried northward during most of the day, and then will turn eastward after the front passes. Area immediately downwind of any active and smoldering fires may experience Code Yellow air quality. Outside any smoke, air quality will hover in the Code Green range.
Outlook: High pressure will build into the Southeast U.S. Thursday and Friday. It will be dry and sunny with a west/northwest breeze on Thursday becoming lighter on Friday. Smoke from wildfires in Tennessee may be carried eastward into the Asheville area, and there may still be some smoke from wildfires within the state if they are still burning/smoldering. Code Yellow air quality will be possible in the mountains both days, while air quality in the rest of the state will remain in the Code Green range.
A wind Advisory is effective through 11/30/2016, 7:00 P.M. for high elevations of the North Carolina Mountains and the following areas: Avery, Buncombe, Graham, Haywood, Macon, Madison, McDowell Mountains, Mitchell, Northern Jackson, Southern Jackson, Swain, Transylvania and Yancey.
Strong southerly winds will develop tonight and continue into Wednesday. The translation of the next round of strong winds should generally be from west to east Tuesday night into Wednesday. Winds are expected to increase to 25 to 35 mph, with a few gusts to 55 mph. This will be most pronounced in the western North Carolina Mountains from midnight through Wednesday. Outside of the highest terrain, wind gusts will range from 30 to 40 mph. Because of the very robust winds aloft, showers and possible thunderstorms could mix down to the surface and cause localized, very strong wind gusts. Some thunderstorms, particularly on Wednesday, could be severe with damaging winds possible. Overall the return of the stronger winds may knock down trees; power outages are possible. To read a detailed weather brief visit the National Weather Service Greenville/Spartanburg. http://www.weather.gov/media/gsp/YouTube/brief.pdf
The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission posts the latest hunting area closures onto their website at http://www.ncwildlife.org/Hunting/Where-to-Hunt/Public-Places.
Temporary forest closures remain in effect for some areas. Please observe all closures and fire restrictions to ensure your safety and the safety of our firefighters. (Hover your mouse over map and click the CTRL key to enlarge.)
TODAY'S UPDATES ON ACTIVE FIRES OR FIRE COMPLEXES
Only those fires being actively managed and staffed are included in the Evening Summary.
HORTON FIRE (NCFS - BLOWING ROCK, WATAUGA COUNTY)
The fire area has received over 3/4" of rain with more on the way. The rain brings much needed moisture to the area. Fire managers plan to reassess the containment percentage Wednesday. Dirt roads around the fire area may be unusually slick due to the rain. Please use extra caution when navigating these roads. Fire managers are beginning to assess a rehabilitation plan. To the extent possible, they want to return the landscape that has been modified during firefighting operations to its original state.
Acreage: 1,450 - Containment: 85% - Personnel: 50 - Start Date: November 21
CLEAR CREEK FIRE (NCFS / USFS - MARION, MCDOWELL COUNTY).
Firefighters worked community projects due to the rain. They will resume rehabilitation work once the ground dries enough to successfully complete the work. Firefighters not assigned to rehabilitation activities were sent to other fires or back to their home units.
Acreage: 3,163 - Containment: 91% - Personnel: 411 - Start Date: November 20
BOTELER FIRE (USFS-CHUNKY GAL AREA, CLAY COUNTY)
Last night's infrared flight did not detect any areas of lingering heat on this fire. Firefighters monitored control lines and checked for fire-weakened trees that have compromised root systems.
Acreage: 9,036- Containment: 85% - Personnel: 260 - Start Date: October 25
MAPLE SPRINGS FIRE (USFS-LAKE SANTEELAH AREA, GRAHAM COUNTY)
The Southern Area Blue Team on the Boteler Fire is assigned management of this fire.
Suppression repairs have been completed. Fire crews continue to monitor the Joyce Kilmer Wilderness area for hot spots. Fire growth is not expected within the perimeter due to the rains received.
Acreage: 7,788 - Containment: 78% - Personnel: 105 - Start Date: November 4
NANTAHALA BRANCH FIRES (USFS-CHUNKY GAL AREA, CLAY COUNTY)
The Southern Area Blue Team is assigned management of the Nantahala Branch Fires. Under this branch, the fires being patrolled/monitored are: Tellico Fire, Old Roughy Fire, Buck Creek Fire, Falls Fire, Grape Cove Fire, Moses Creek Fire, Jones Gap Fire, Jarrett Knob Fire, Wine Spring Fire, Mulberry Fire, Moss Knob Fire, May Branch Fire, Boardtree Fire, Charley Creek Fire, Nick Fire, Ridge Gap Fire, Ferebee Fire, Cliffside Fire, Whitewater Fire, Howard Gap Fire, Knob Fire, Muskrat Fire, Bullpen Fire, Jones Creek Fire, Cathey Gap Fire, Dick's Creek Fire.
CAMP BRANCH FIRE (USFS - OTTO, MACON COUNTY)The Southern Area Blue Team on the Boteler Fire is assigned management of this fire.
Forest Road 69 (Wayah Bald Tower Road) remains closed due to the proximity of the Camp Branch Fire and associated firefighting activity. Drivers should use caution; smoke may limit visibility, and debris may roll onto the roadway.
Crews pulled hose off the fireline and backhauled excess supplies and equipment. They also used the break in the weather to clean trucks and equipment and sharpen tools. They are prepared to respond to any new starts.
Acreage: 3,210 - Containment: 55% - Personnel: 293 - Start Date: November 23
PARTY ROCK FIRE (NCFS-LAKE LURE AREA, RUTHERFORD, BUNCOMBE, AND HENDERSON COUNTIES)
The operations has switched to suppression repair and demobilization. Available resources have been assigned to other fires. The incident management team transfers management to the N.C. Forest Service tomorrow 11/30/16 at 7:00 A.M. Last update provided on this fire.
The donations received have been greatly appreciated; no additional supplies are needed. If you would like to donate monetarily, we ask that you please donate to a local fire department or the Hickory Nut Gorge Foundation. The foundation will act as a pass through for needs directly associated with the fire.
Hickory Nut Gorge Foundation
PO Box 783
Lake Lure, NC 28746
Lake Lure would like to invite those affected by the fire to an event to be held Sunday, December 4 at 2:30 p.m. in Morse Park Meadow located in Lake Lure. Those planning to attend are asked to wear a red or yellow shirt and plan to be there for 30-45 minutes to make a short video showing thanks.
Acreage: 7,145 - Containment: 100% - Personnel: 177 - Start Date: November 5
ROCK MOUNTAIN FIRE (USFS - SOUTHERN NANTAHALA WILDERNESS AREA, NORTH GEORGIA AND CLAY AND MACON COUNTIES IN NC)
The following roads remain closed: Coleman River Road, Patterson Gap Road and Abe Gap Road.
Due to the rains, the fire perimeter movement isn't expected to move, lighter fuels were extinguished. However, fire danger remains high. Larger fuels, like down logs, standing dead trees and stumps or root systems, continue to hold heat and, as the weather dries, can re-ignite leaves. Resources continued to patrol and hold firelines. Structure groups will continue to maintain lines around homes and structures.
Acreage: 24,725- Containment: 50% - Personnel: 668 - Start Date: November 9
CHESTNUT KNOB FIRE (NCFS-SOUTH MOUNTAINS STATE PARK, BURKE COUNTY)
UNCHANGED Firefighters worked on hot spots and continued mop up and holding the lines in all divisions as well as structure protection. The Florida Forest Service, Type 3 team will assume management of the fire Wednesday, and the incident command post will relocate to the South Mountain Visitor Center. At 7:00 P.M. tonight, there will no longer be a Chestnut Knob Fire information phone line. See our Chestnut Knob Fire Facebook page for the latest information.
Acreage: 6,435 - Containment: 90% - Personnel: 139 - Start Date: November 6
PINNACLE MOUNTAIN FIRE (SCFS / USFS - PICKENS AND TRANSYLVANIA COUNTIES)
Crews were not dispatched to the lines this morning out of concern for safety; wet roads, slick terrain and soaked ground hinder line improvement and backburning. Small teams were projected to scout the perimeter and make fireline assessments if the rain abated. All air operations were suspended for the day.
Acreage: 10,560 - Containment: 62% - Personnel: 316 - Start Date: November 9
Media Advisory: For all information about the Pinnacle Mountain Fire and the ongoing response in South Carolina, all media should contact the Pinnacle Mountain Joint Information Center at (864) 898-2437 or email@example.com.
OTHER PERTINENT LINKS
Nantahala National Forest Closures
Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests (relative to the ROCK MOUNTAIN FIRE)
Appalachian Trail (A.T.)
The latest information is available on the Joint Information Center blog athttp://ncjic.blogspot.com/ for the following topics:
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