Alva Review-Courier -

Northwest Complex fires 83 percent contained

 

March 17, 2017

The containment borders for the Northwest Oklahoma Complex fires continues to enlarge. According to the Oklahoma Forestry Services (OFS) Thursday morning, the fires were 83 percent contained. On the accompanying map of the fire areas, the heavy black line indicates a contained area. The Kansas portion of the Starbuck Fire (not shown on map) is estimated to be 95 percent contained.

Numerous OFS overhead, heavy equipment, Type 6 Engines and aircraft are assigned to the complex to assist local fire departments with the control efforts. Other state forestry resources from Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana and Tennessee have arrived and are committed to the firefighting effort. An Incident Command Post is established at the Woodward County Fairgrounds to facilitate briefings, resource assignments and ordering.

The fire area was expected to experience "Elevated" fire danger levels on Thursday and Friday, March 16 and 17. Fire danger levels are predicted to become "Near Critical" on Sunday. Resources will continue working existing control lines and mopping-up hot spots to strengthen the fires' perimeter.

OFS says utility companies have started to replace power poles and lines damaged by the fire. There were no changes in fire perimeters during the previous burning period.

• Starbuck (Beaver and Harper County) – 662,687 acres total (464,308 acres in Kansas and 198,379 acres in Oklahoma). This fire is located near the Oklahoma communities of Buffalo, Knowles, Gate, Rosston and Laverne. Numerous residences, secondary structures, livestock and other infrastructure have been lost. Damage assessments are ongoing.

• Selman (Harper and Woodward County) – 47,289 acres, located approximately 10 miles north of Woodward. No estimate on residences or secondary structures lost. Damage assessments are ongoing.

• 283 Fire (Harper County) – 69,395 acres, located near the communities of Rosston, Laverne and May. Damage assessments are ongoing.

• Beaver Fire (Beaver County) – 2,962 acres, located between Beaver and Elmwood along highway 273. Damage assessments ongoing.

Burn Bans

The accompanying county burn ban map shows that more counties have joined to declare bans. Woods County's burn ban continues through Tuesday, March 21, unless extended by the county commissioners. Look for the latest burn bans at http://www.forestry.ok.gov/burn-ban-information.

 

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