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Forest Service responding to new fire

Feather Publishing
8/20/2013 - 10:35 a.m.

The Forest Service is responding to a new fire on the Beckwourth Ranger District.  The reported location of the fire is about a mile east of the Lightning Tree Campground on the east shore of Lake Davis.


Hough Complex morning update

Feather Publishing
8/20/2013 - 7:30 a.m.
Radio traffic suggests the fires settled down shortly after dark last night with no new significant activity.  The Mt. Hough lookout reports rain over the fire area this morning. 
The acerage reported this morning is still 180 acres.  This is the same as was being reported early yesterday so its likely they have not had a chance to get more accurate mapping and acreage yet this morning.
The fire area, like much of northern California, remains under a red flag alert for thunderstorms, however there is more moisture expected with the thunderstorms today.

Thunderstorm causes increased fire activity; evacuations possible

Feather Publishing
8/19/2013 6:00 p.m
There are mandatory evacuations in Taylorsville  from Nelson Street along Arlington Road (southside) to Johnson Ranch Road.  The evacuation center is at the Town Hall in Greenville.
8/19/2013  5:00 p.m.

Winds from an active thunder cell over Indian Valley have caused in increase in fire activity.  The active cell is moving from Greenville in the direction of Taylorsville.  It is producing downstrikes and strong downdraft winds. The winds have  necessitated a temporary halt to air activity for safety reasons.  Air tankers are being released to other fires.  

Fire personnel are coming off of the fire lines and into Taylorsville to assist with structure protections.  Additional structure fire engines, including two from Quincy are being moved into the area.

Read more: Thunderstorm causes increased fire activity; evacuations possible

More large airtankers ordered for the Hough Incident

Feather Publishing
8/19/2013 - 4:15 p.m.
The air attack supervisor on the Hough Complex has just requested two large (Type 1) airtankers and a lead plane for use on the Hough Complex.  Fire managers must make their case for why their fire should be given priority for the use of the tankers.  In this case, the air attack supervisor said the two fires above Taylorsville have grown together and are making a push towards Taylorsville.

Read more: More large airtankers ordered for the Hough Incident

Military C-130 MAFFS airtankers drop on the Hough Complex

A C-130 MAFFS from the California Air National Guard drops retardant near the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway on the Mountain Fire.  Air Force photo by Senior Airman Nicholas Carzis.
Feather Publishing
Two C-130 MAFFS airtankers were used on the Hough Complex fires around noon on Monday.  These aircraft are operated by the Air National Guard in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service.

Some interesting facts about the Modular Airborne FireFighting System (MAFFS) airtankers:

  • Operating one of the eight MAFFS aircraft costs $5,000 to $6,000 per hour. This is paid by the U.S. Forest Service or is charged to the fire.
  • After the crash of MAFFS 7 on the White Draw Fire near Edgemont, South Dakota in 2012, the  ”MAFFS 7″ number was retired.
  • The retardant is pumped out of the 3,000-gallon tank by compressed air stored in two tanks at 1,200 psi.
  • The MAFFS units were contracted by the U.S. Forest Service and manufactured by the  Aero Union company in Chico.
  • The military personnel working on a MAFFS aircraft typically fly for seven days, and then are relieved by a replacement crew.
  • The U.S. Forest Service supplies the ground support and retardant loading personnel when MAFFS are activated.

The C-130s reloaded in Chico following their drops.  While awaiting further orders, they were diverted to a new fire on the Stanislaus National Forest.  It is not know if they will return to help with the fires on the Plumas.



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