Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Sunflower Fire at 3,100 acres south of Payson

Photo by Carolyn Wall
Sunflower Fire, Monday, May 14, 2012, 7 p.m.
From the northbound lane of Highway 87, milepost 218

Sunflower Fire Update from Monday, May 14 at 12 p.m.

Acres:  3,100                                       Start date:  May 12, 2012
Cause:  Under Investigation                   Location:  21 miles south of Payson
Containment: 0 percent             Fuels:  Grass, chaparral, pinyon pine
Terrain:  Steep, rugged              Resources:  9 crews, 14 engines
Total personnel: 280                             Available air support:  5 helicopters, 6 air tankers
Summary:  With sustained northeasterly winds, the Sunflower Fire has become very active moving to the southwest with a large smoke plume becoming established.  There is also active fire on the west side, burning into the Mazaatzal Wilderness, and in the interior, burning in dense chaparral and manzanita.  The rugged terrain and very dry fuels continue to present challenges to the fire suppression efforts.

Taking advantage of the winds, firefighters are working to improve the line on the east side of the fire to protect the power line along the west side of state route 87.  They are moving to extend the fireline to the north along Forest Road 201.  The powerline remains threatened but is still energized at this time.  No structures are immediately threatened.  .

Additional firefighters and equipment have been ordered and are responding to the fire.

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