July 31, French Fire incident update

July 31, 2014 

French Fire Location: The fire is burning in the area between Rock Creek and Fish Creek campgrounds, in the San Joaquin River drainage, Bass Lake Ranger District, in the Sierra National Forest.

Acres Burned: 7,024

Structures Threatened: N/A

Structures Destroyed: 0

Containment: 10%

Fire Started: Monday, July 28, 2014

Injuries: 0

Cause: Under investigation

Total personnel assigned to the Fire: 1,074

Summary: Crews are planning a burning operation on the southern end of the fire to reinforce the hand lines and dozer lines, which were constructed from the San Joaquin River up to Forest Road 4S81. This anchor point will support the operations of structure defense in the Hogue Ranch and Kinsmans Flat area, which is currently the highest priority of the French Fire.

Fire crews will continue constructing direct fire lines from Forest Road 4S81 to the west and turned the corner heading north past Forest Road 7S07. The fire is being held on the east flank and has not crossed the San Joaquin River. On the northern end of the fire continues to back down towards the Windy Point Boat Launch at the Mammoth Pools.

The French Fire continues to produce large amounts of smoke, which has impacted local communities. Smoke is typically greater in the morning and evening hours. Plan outdoor activities for times and places with low smoke levels. Up-slope breezes occur during the day, which will often take smoke into higher elevations. In the evening, these winds change direction and bring smoke down slope to lower elevations.

For more information about smoke impacts, please visit the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Districts website at: http://valleyair.org/wildfires.htm

Evacuations: Several Forest Service and private campgrounds were evacuated for public safety concerns. Several summer homes in the Hogue Apple Ranch and Wagner’s Resort were also evacuated. The impacted residences were able to make arrangements to stay elsewhere and there was not a need to open any shelters.

Closures: A Forest Service Area Road and Trail Closure, Forest Order # 15-14-07, has been issued for the French Fire area. More information about the Forest Closure and the closure can be found at: http://tinyurl.com/o44cvyu .

-NPS

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