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Friday Midday Update: Firefighters Make Big Progress on Rush Fire

Friday, August 24th, 2012

Here is your midday report on conditions from the Rush Fire burning north of Wendel.

According to the BLM this morning, the Rush fire is now essentially a 43,000-acre fire that’s half in California and half in Nevada. That’s how much of the 320,793-acre blaze is still active.

Firefighters today are focusing on that northeast part of the fire, and will work to keep the fire out of the canyon of the Middle Fork of Buffalo Creek, in Nevada.

Today two things will favor firefighters: winds will be the lightest expected over the next few days, and sparse vegetation, with areas of lava rock, is providing much less “fuel” for the fire.

Today, around 300 firefighters end their day in a new camp at Burnt Lake. This will put firefighters much closer to the active part of the fire for what they hope will be the last days of the Rush fire. The “spike” camp at Thunder Mountain near Ravendale will be closed.

The main fire camp, at the Lassen County Fairgrounds in Susanville, remains in place.

The fire made no major runs on Thursday. Near Antelope Basin, in the northeast part of the fire, air tankers dropped retardant and smoke jumpers parachuted in to work on stopping this part of the fire. South of Burnt Lake, firefighters made good progress on building fireline on Thursday.

Overnight, firefighters continued burning out, building line, patrolling, and mopping up in the northeast part of the fire.

On the southeast edge of the fire near the state line, suppression-repair work continues. Crews hope to finish this work on Friday and will move on to the southwest edge of the fire, east of U.S. 395 in California.

Area and Road Closures in Effect: Public lands bounded by Highway 395 on the west, the Sand Pass road and Nevada 447 on the east, the Wendel Road on the south, and Juniper Ridge road to Buckhorn road on the north are closed. The Buffalo Meadows road in Washoe Co., Nev., is also closed.

Remarks: NOTE: Use of chainsaws on public lands managed by BLM in NE California and far northwest Nevada is suspended because of extreme fire danger. Fire officials remind residents and visitors that fire restrictions are in effect for public lands and national forests in northeast California and far northwest Nevada. Campfires are permitted only in posted recreation sites.

A note for our readers who are LMUD customers – Due to the unstable nature of PG&E’s Caribou transmission line LMUD will be operating off of Honey Lake Power for the duration of the Plumas County Chips Fire. LMUD is asking that all customers conserve energy by unplugging or turning off all non-essential household equipment and appliances.

Satellite view of the Rush Fire, August 24th, 12:47p.m.

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