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Mud Lick Fire 47% contained

SALMON, Idaho (KIFI) - The lightning caused Mud Lick Fire that started on July 8 has burned 20,643 acres and is 47% contained.

Due to the threat of floods over the weekend, fire crews removed pumps and equipment near creeks and other risky areas. As weather conditions moderated, crews reinstalled and checked pumps to ensure they were able to support fire operations. Crews will continue building the contingency line along the Ridge Road between Five Corners and Moyer Creek.

Despite little growth of the fire over the last few days due to rains, a warming trend could quickly reverse that. Record drought conditions, fine flashy fuels, and already dry down and dead fuels are easily susceptible to increased fire activity as weather warms.

Closures remain in effect for the Mud Lick Fire area. Information can be found HERE.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Why did fire managers change the completion percentage from 92% to 47%?
    Due to numerous factors including the fire’s location, fire behavior, and concerns for firefighter safety, fire managers are using a confine/contain and point protection strategy for the Mud Lick Fire. When crews are not building traditional handlines because they can’t “go direct,” it’s difficult to identify true containment progress. Previously, progress was defined simply by calculating how many miles of primary and contingency lines crews had prepped.
    Work done by crews and heavy equipment continues to progress, but when the contingency lines are 100% constructed, the fire will still be burning. The new percentage reflects both the progress of primary and contingency line construction, as well as crew’s work to hold the fire within those lines.
  2. Why was the Salmon River so brown yesterday?
    The Salmon area, even without the influence of wildfires, is prone to natural debris and mud flows.
    Significant rain and saturated soil caused several mud flows south of Challis over the weekend that
    delivered sediment to the Salmon River, causing a temporary change in water clarity and quality.
  3. What is an infrared flight?
    Fire operations regularly include a night-time flight by an airplane equipped with an infrared sensor. The data captured by that sensor provide an excellent snapshot of thermal hot spots to help inform firefighting tactics. Unfortunately, these sensors can’t see through thick cloud cover, so fires don’t get these data every day. The sensors on those planes flying at 10,000 feet above ground level can pick up the heat signal from a camp stove on a clear night! The latest infrared flight over the Mud Lick Fire shows significant heat remains despite recent rain.

The fire burning grass, brush, ponderosa pine and douglas-fir 22 miles west of Salmon.

Article Topic Follows: Idaho

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