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Forest closure in place for south central Idaho wildfire area

A forest area closure is in effect for the Cassia Division of the Sawtooth National Forest
A smoke column coming off the Badger Fire burning in the South Hills of the Sawtooth National Forest in Cassia County. Image taken Sept. 14, 2020.
A smoke column coming off the Badger Fire burning in the South Hills of the Sawtooth National Forest in Cassia County. Image taken Sept. 14, 2020.(InciWeb/Forest Service)
Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 11:22 AM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - A forest closure order has been put in place Wednesday and residents are asked to be prepared in the event of an evacuation. The fire in Cassia County has grown to 28,000 acres.

The fire dubbed the Badger Fire is burning in the South Hills in the Minidoka Ranger District of the Sawtooth National Forest. Wednesday morning the fires was listed as zero percent contained.

Posted by Idaho Fire Info on Wednesday, September 16, 2020

According to a news release, 149 personnel are currently working on the fire, with five helicopters, six engines, and two dozers. The fire pushed east Tuesday, adding 4,500 acres. The fire has reached Monument Peak, which has prompted officials to order a Type 2 Incident Management Team to assist with the fire fighting efforts. The Great Basin Type 3 Team — Nevada Sierra Front assumed command of the fire Tuesday morning.

Weather, terrain, and heavy fuel loading are creating extremely difficult conditions for fire fighters. The fire burned actively through the night and activity is expected to increase through out the day with the Fire Weather Watch.

CLOSURES – A forest area closure is in effect for the Cassia Division of the Sawtooth National Forest. The purpose of this order is to protect the public and fire fighters during wildfire activity suppression activities. This includes all roads, trails, most campgrounds, and hunting units. Harrington and Third Fork Campgrounds remain open. Please visit: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7196/ for the full closure order. The order will be in effect until October 30, 2020 unless rescinded by the Sawtooth National Forest Supervisor.

There are no evacuation currently in place, but residents in the are asked to prepare.

Please follow these steps for a swift and safe evacuation if the need where to arise:

6 P’s of Evacuations-

  • Plan- Make a plan
  • Prescriptions- Gather necessary prescriptions
  • Pets- Gather pets, pet food, and pet supplies
  • Papers- Collect important papers: insurance cards, medical, taxes
  • Pictures- Gather important pictures
  • Plastics- Credit cards

Visit www.readyforwildfire.org/prepare-for-wildfire/ready-set-go/ for more information on preparing for wildfire evacuations.

The fire started Saturday near Badger Gulch and Forest Service roads 533 and 536. The cause of the fire is unknown. The fire is currently burning grass, brush, logging slash and heavy timber, multiple structures are threatened.

Regionally here is a look at the fires burning in the central and southern Idaho region.

Fire NameSizeLocationContainment
Trap Fire400 acresOff Highway 21, 10 miles outside StanleyN/A
Bear Creek Fire11,900 acresLemhi Pass area, 29 miles east of Salmon85%
Grouse Fire3,980 acres35 Miles NNE OF Glenns Ferry23%
Woodhead Fire84,059 acres20 miles northwest of Cambridge38%
Porphyry Fire13,000 acresFrank Church Wilderness of No Return, McCall Ranger District. 20 miles North of Yellow Pine, Idaho.N/A
Buck Fire17,449 acres30 miles NE of Cascade6%

clarification: An initial press release was released saying Rock Creek had been asked to evacuate, but that was later corrected to say there were no evacuations ordered. Residents in the area are asked to prepare in case an evacuation is ordered.

Copyright 2020 KMVT/KSVT. All rights reserved.

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