Friday, May 25, 2012

Firefighters say control lines adjacent to SR 87 will remain secure as holiday traffic increases

Sunflower Fire News Release
May 25, 2012 11:00 a.m.
Fire Information: (575) 302-2107

Acres:  17,618                                     Start date:  May 12, 2012
Cause:  Under Investigation               Location:  21 miles south of Payson
Containment: 43 percent                     Fuels:  Grass, chaparral, pinyon pine
Terrain:  Steep, rugged                        Resources:  2 crews, 5 engines,
Total personnel: 67                              Available air support: 1 helicopter

Summary: Previously unburned pockets of vegetation within the Sunflower Fire perimeter have burned actively during the past couple of days resulting in increased fire acreage.

Incident Commander Brian Achziger got a birdseye view of the fire yesterday during a reconnaissance flight.  The most active fire behavior continues to occur in the steep, remote, rugged wilderness terrain near Mt. Peeley. 

Firefighters are ensuring control lines adjacent to State Route 87 (the Beeline Highway) remain secure as holiday weekend traffic increases.  Distant smoke from the Mazatzal Wilderness Area may be visible to passing motorists but it is not expected to result in any major highway closures. Uncontrolled firelines are being closely monitored from the air and by a wildland fire module on the ground.   

Area visitors and residents are reminded to be aware of emergency vehicles that may be entering and exiting roadways in suppression and monitoring efforts.  Fire restrictions are in effect in the Tonto National Forest and may be viewed online at

For statewide road conditions and closures please go to or dial 5-1-1 from any landline or mobile phone from anywhere in Arizona.  (From outside Arizona, dial 1-888-411-ROAD (7623) or 602-523-0244).

For more smoke information and air quality forecasts, please visit the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality website at


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