Saturday, June 16, 2012

Public meeting on Poco Fire today in Payson

Poco Fire command transferred from local team to
 Northern Arizona Incident Management Team.
Public meeting takes place at 4:30 p.m. at Gila County Public Library in Payson
 YOUNG, Ariz. – Transfer of command of the Poco Fire occurred today from the local team to the Northern Arizona Incident Management Team commanded by Matt Reidy. The team will continue aggressively suppressing the fire using engines, hotshot crews, dozers and water tenders. The 1,500-acre fire started June 14 and is 15 percent contained.
Steep, rocky terrain, unseasonably dry fuels, high temperatures, and low humidity are resulting in very active fire behavior. Crews will continue to hold the fire along Forest Road 512, and construct fireline on the eastern and western boundaries of the fire. Additional resources will be arriving throughout the day to assist in the fire suppression efforts.
Smoke from the Poco Fire is settling in Young and around Payson, Heber and outlying areas. Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) specialists have placed smoke monitors in Payson and Show Low. For smoke information and air quality forecasts, please visit the ADEQ website at
Visibility is an excellent measure of air quality. If visibility is ten miles or more, the air quality is good. Visibility of six to nine miles indicates moderate air quality. Three to five miles of visibility indicates conditions unhealthy for people who have respiratory ailments. One and a half to two and a half miles, the air quality is unhealthy. One to one and a quarter miles indicates the air quality is very unhealthy. If visibility due to smoke is less than a mile, the air quality is hazardous. Smoke-sensitive persons in affected areas may need to take action such as remaining indoors, using air conditioning, or temporarily moving to an unaffected area.
In order to support the fire operation and for public safety, the following road closures are in effect: FS 512 is closed three miles south of its juncture with Hwy 260. The closure begins at the junction of FR 512 and FR 291 (Colcord Junction).
For more information, the Pleasant Valley Ranger District administrative office will be open this weekend: 928-426-4300.
A public meeting is scheduled today, June 16 at 4:30 p.m. at the Gila County Public Library in Payson, AZ.
For more information on the fire, please visit
For more information regarding forest recreation sites and fire restrictions, please contact the Tonto National Forest at 602-225-5200, or check online at  

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