Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

24 Comments
Reads 10557
Firefighters monitoring and mopping up the #FrontFire Aug 23. Photo by Daniel R. Patterson

INCIDENT FACTS

Incident Start Date: August 19, 2018

Incident Start Time: 1330

Incident Type: Wildfire

Cause: Under investigation

Command Agency: Incident command transitioned from SoCal Team 2 back to the Los Padres National Forest Aug 24 at 6am.

Incident Location: Los Padres National Forest, 30 miles NE of Santa Maria CA on Hwy 166

Structures threatened: 0

People Evacuated: 0

Size: 1,014 acres

Containment: 98%

Expected Full Containment: Wednesday August 29th, 2018 approx. 12:00 AM

Civilian Injuries: 0

Firefighter Injuries: 3

Civilian Fatalities: 0

Firefighter Fatalities: 0

 Total Personnel: 241      
 
Update by Los Padres National Forest Service
6:30 a.m., August 24, 2018
 
Firefighters are near full containment of the Front Fire, located at the Rockfront OHV area on the Santa Lucia Ranger District. Favorable weather has helped firefighters continue to strengthen containment lines. Steep uneven terrain and hazard trees are still a risk, so firefighter and public safety are top priorities. Complete fire containment is predicted by Aug 29. Some priority resources have been released to assist other fires, while ensuring continued coverage as needed on the Front Fire.
 

Update by Los Padres National Forest Service
12:00 p.m., August 23, 2018

Firefighters continue to make progress towards full containment of the Front Fire, located at the Rockfront OHV area on the Santa Lucia Ranger District. Favorable weather is helping firefighters continue to strengthen and build the containment lines. Steep uneven terrain and hazard trees are still a threat, so firefighter and public safety are top priorities. Complete Fire containment is imminent and some resources are being released to assist other fires.

Forest Restriction: As a reminder, the following is restricted in all areas of the Los Padres National Forest with a few exceptions. Wood and charcoal fires, fireworks, Smoking, and recreational target shooting are prohibited. Hunting is not allowed in the fire closure areas. Operating or using any internal or external combustion engine without a spark arresting device properly installed, maintained and in effective working order is prohibited. A forest closure covers the Front Fire area within and adjacent to the roads and trails north of State Highway 166. Details on restrictions and exceptions can be found by viewing: https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/lpnf/alerts-notices.

Firefighters at Front Fire. Mike Eliason, SBC fire

Update by Los Padres National Forest Service
10:00 a.m., August 22, 2018

Los Padres closure order bars public from Front Fire area

Los Padres National Forest officials issued a forest order closing the Front Fire area on the Santa Lucia Ranger District to the public effective today, August 22. Forest Service law enforcement officers will strictly enforce the closure order, which carries a penalty of $5,000 and/or six months in jail.

The order will expire when the Front Fire is fully contained and controlled.

The boundary of the Front Fire Closure Area begins at the Adobe Trailhead along Hwy. 166 and continues north on Adobe Trail (31W03), including Logan Ridge OHV Trail (17E05), and then along Twin Rocks OHV Trail (17E12) to Rockfront OHV Trail (17E14) and continues to Baja Campground. The closure continues north on Upper 35 Canyon OHV Trail (17E13) to the Los Padres National Forest boundary at Section 1 then heads east along the Forest boundary to Deadman Flat. It then continues south along the Forest boundary and then west along the Forest boundary to Gifford Trailhead, then continues along Hwy. 166 to the Adobe Trailhead.

Closure of the fire area is necessary to help ensure public safety, to keep the area clear for fire equipment traffic, and to allow for the scorched landscape to begin the rehabilitation and recovery process.

Los Padres remains under Extreme Fire restrictions which prohibits campfires and recreational target shooting in all areas of the Forest. Hunting during open season is not affected by Extreme Fire restrictions, however hunting is not allowed within the fire closure area.


Update by edhat staff
11:00 p.m., August 21, 2018
 
The Front Fire is currently estimated to be 936 acres in size and 61% contained.
 
The full expected containment date is Sunday, August 26 at 12:00 a.m.
 

Update by edhat staff
8:40 a.m., August 21, 2018

The fire has burned approximately 900 acres and is 29% contained. There are 618 fire personnel on the scene with 5 helicopters assigned to the fire.

The fire is burning in grass, brush and chaparral along the Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo County line. Favorable weather is helping firefighters. Firefighter and public safety are top priorities. Other priorities include protection of Red Legged Frog habitat, major power lines and archaeological sites. 

The Los Padres National Forest Service reports 3 firefighter injuries, but further information on these injuries have not been revealed.

There are no evacuations, but 5 structures are threatened, although no one has been evacuated.

National Forest lands in the fire area north and west of Highway 166 are closed. The Los Padres National Forest is currently in Extreme Fire restrictions which prohibits campfires and recreational target shooting in all areas of the Forest until the end of the declared fire season. While hunting is not affected by the ban on recreational target shooting, hunting is not permitted within the closure area. 


Update by edhat staff
5:00 p.m., August 20, 2018

The Front Fire has been re-estimated to have consumed 875 acres. The drop in acreage is a result of better mapping.

There are approximately 487 fire personnel on scene with 5 helicopters assigned to the fire.

It is currently 30% contained.


Update by edhat staff
9:00 a.m., August 20, 2018

As of this morning, the fire has consumed 1000 acres. There are approximately 700 fire personnel working the Front Fire. Several air tankers, including a DC10 are assigned to the fire, as well as a number of helicopters.

As a precaution, officials are closing the Sierra Madre Road area and are requesting campers and hunters to leave in the event the fire crosses the highway.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.


Update by edhat staff
5:15 p.m., August 19, 2018

The Front Fire off State Route 166 in between Santa Maria and Cuyama is now estimated to have reached 600 acres.

Approximately 250 fire personnel are on the scene, including units from the Los Padres National Forest Service, CAL Fire, and Santa Barbara County Fire Department. 

The Front Fire was first reported at approximately 1:37 pm. It is located at in the Rockfront OHV area of the Los Padres National Forest in the Santa Lucia Ranger District.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.


Reported by Roger the Scanner Guy
1:41 p.m., August 19, 2018

Brush fire on the north side of Highway 166 in front of Rock Front Ranch near Santa Maria. There are numerous reporting parties. Cal Fire is responding.

The fire is moving towards the Highway and is now being managed by the Los Padres National Forest Service.

It appears to be 20 acres in size as of 1:50 p.m.

Aircraft will be in the air soon surveying the area, checking to see if anyone is in immediate danger.

Login to add Comments

24 Comments

Toggle Comments (Show)
yin yang Aug 21, 2018 07:51 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Wow. The Whittier Fire, which sparked [on July 8] and burned over 18,000 acres, was officially declared "out" by Los Padres National Forest on Sunday, December 31. The fire was declared 100 percent contained on October 5 after the fire area received its first measurable rainfall. KEYT. Thomas fire started Dec. 4, '17. Inciweb doesn't report date of containment or extinguishment, CNN reported containment on Jan. 12, '18. CBS reports, on June 1, '18: "The largest wildfire in recorded California history is officially out nearly six months after it began. Los Padres National Forest officials declared the Thomas Fire extinguished Friday after no hotspots were detected within the perimeter for more than two months." So I guess it was almost out or out in April. Just mindboggling, isn't it?! I so fear our fall and sundowners. Fog of the last few days had been such a gift.

a-1574475367 Aug 20, 2018 11:04 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Defensible space is pretty much an urban myth. One of my favorite KEYT news stories of all time showed Palminteri, mic in hand, gabbing about some place up above Foothill Rd that had been touted as the case study/prime example for "This is how you clear your land of all greenery to create defensible space." It was right after the Jesusita Fire. As The Palm rattled on, the viewers could see behind him and ---------- all you could see still standing of that house was the brick chimney and a couple crumbling, smoldering knee-high walls.

oceandrew Aug 21, 2018 11:52 AM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Defensible space doesn't mean "fireproof". It's just a little bit of distance so your house won't roast if the flames get too close. It's like raising your burger to the top rung of the bbq pit, it'll still cook but it'll take a lot longer. That's all firefighters are looking are looking for, an edge, a bit more time to cool the flames that are getting too close and hopefully a wind shift that'll push those flames in another direction 'coz in a burnover event there is only one thing to do and that's get the heck out to a safety area and preserve yourself from becoming a crispy critter.

Shasta Guy Aug 20, 2018 06:54 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

All the hotspots that were orange this morning on the National Fire Situational Awareness map have now turned yellow, and no new red dots showed up. They must be doing a good job keeping this thing from getting out of control! Let's hope winds stay favorable.

yin yang Aug 21, 2018 07:35 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Containment means "all on-site heat detections (smouldering stumps, etc.) doused." ?! No. It means containment lines. I'm pretty sure the Whittier fire, for example, burned for quite a while after containment. The big ones, like Zaca, might've burned for months, inside containment lines. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- John, aside from your incredibly useful and appreciated community service in your site and here, your posts are always a joy to read. Thank you. Just adding some info to the discussion. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- https://www.nwpb.org/2014/07/19/what-do-those-containment-numbers-mean/ -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- "The fire containment numbers you hear in our reports measure how much of the fire’s perimeter is surrounded by a fire line. " -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- "Contain a fire: A fuel break around the fire has been completed. This break may include natural barriers or manually and/or mechanically constructed line." https://www.fs.fed.us/nwacfire/home/terminology.html

John Wiley Aug 20, 2018 08:08 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Yes, and the I.R. satellite from an hour ago shows no high-sensitivity low-resolution heat detection. This would indicate nothing more than spot fires. Containment of course means robust containment lines and all on-site heat detections (smouldering stumps, etc.) doused. Still plenty of smoke in that area on the Broadcast Peak webcam a couple of hours ago though, but maybe tomorrow the smoke will start to thin. At least from that nearby fire. The air quality map shows our region not getting better than "Moderate" yet.

destag Aug 20, 2018 01:40 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Actually due to better mapping it's at 875 acres as of 11:00 am and 5% contained. Also requesting campers leave the Sierra Madre area in case it jumps 166. Interesting how it grew from 600 to 700 and then 898.01 without expanding it's perimeter. Must have been areas within that didn't show on the maps.

Shasta Guy Aug 20, 2018 06:48 AM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

No new IR detects overnight based on the National Fire Situational Awareness map, which is good. That means the fire did not expand its perimeter...unlike the Mendocino Complex or Hirz fires up in Northern California .

a-1574475367 Aug 20, 2018 05:53 AM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

So many fires. Yesterday driving around I thought it looked smoky - the mountains seemed hazy. Did we have smoke from this fire?

John Wiley Aug 19, 2018 09:46 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

We flew along the coast and got some pix of that and Morro that I'm about send to Ed. In case they're not working night shift to cover this even tho it may not be threatening any structures, I'll also post on SBitZ.NET and maybe the pix will be on Edhat tomorrow. Anyway, it looked to me like it was down to a small plume at 7pm or so. The plume was white (good sign) and low (meaning not exceptionally large and hot fire at that point - good sign). Daylight we'll hopefully know more, and no people or structures will be threatened. Wonder if we'll survive the peak fire season mostly intact, then have El Nino to worry about. :(

PitMix Aug 20, 2018 01:13 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

What are the chances of no additional fires until we start to get rain? If we get rain? If I lived in a place that hadn't burned in the last few years, I'd have my defensible space cleared and my go-bag ready to roll.

Shasta Guy Aug 19, 2018 09:09 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Keep track of things by first by National Fire Situational Awareness: https://maps.nwcg.gov/sa/#/%3F/34.6137/-119.253/10 . You'll need to paste the link into your browser to see the latest hot spots. Inciweb lists the fire on the their website here: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/maps/6158/ . I think SB county fire will be a better resource in the short term. In a day or so, Inciweb should be releasing detailed operational maps of the fire if it can't get knocked down quick. As always, these links can be found at SBitz.net on the list of links of natural phenomena affecting our area. As usual, a thanks to John Wiley for creating that platform.

Roger Aug 19, 2018 02:21 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Hearing SBSO talking about closing highway 166 for Firefighter and responder equipment only...If it's not closed yet it will be.

Roger Aug 19, 2018 02:07 PM
Front Fire is 98% Contained at 1,014 Acres

Firefighter witnessing fire suggests reverse 911 for Pine Canyon and Tepusquet Areas also 4 miles West of Rock Front Ranch check and see if Rancho Gomez is occupied...

Please Login or Register to comment on this.