San Rafael, Crooks and Tunnel Fire Updates
The Arizona wildfire season started early and is expected to be intense.
To a press conference in MarchGov. Doug Ducey said Arizona’s wildfire season could be even more catastrophic in 2022.
“I hesitate to call it wildfire season because, as our firefighters and fire officials know, Arizona faces the risk of wildfires year-round,” Ducey said.
In the first three months of 2022, approximately 90 fires were reported with a total of 627 acres burned. The state’s wildfire season typically begins in May.
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Here’s a roundup of wildfire updates across Arizona.
San Rafael fire
(Last update: May 9)
Location: 35 km southeast of Patagonia
What we know: A red flag warning is in place for areas east of Tucson, including the San Rafael Fire Zone, which means high winds and low humidity are expected. These weather conditions can hamper fire suppression efforts, according to the Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management. Winds could push the fire further north and northeast. About 120 people are affected by the fire.
Evacuations and closures: The area south of State Route 83 in the area of Canelo Pass Road and Forest Road 799 is being evacuated. Residents northeast of SR 83 and FR 799 are in “set” status. About 80 people were evacuated and the Red Cross set up shelter at the United Methodist Community Church at 387 McKeown Avenue in Patagonia.
Area: 10,562 acres
Fire status date: May 7
(Last update: May 9)
Location: 18 km south of Prescott
What we know: Some closures remain in effect, although all evacuated neighborhoods are back to “ready” status. Red flag conditions continue in the region. Despite weather conditions, fire crews prevented growth and reinforced the northwestern edge of the fire. About 217 people are affected by the fire.
Evacuations and closures: The emergency closure area has been reduced, allowing the opening of Upper Goldwater Lake and additional trails north of County Road 101. According to the Prescott National Forest, the Groom Creek and Spruce Mountain trails remain closed for public safety. All roads, trails and recreation sites, including Upper and Lower Wolf Creek Campground and Palace Station, remain closed in the closure area. As the fire crew begins to move camp out of Watson Lake, the city of Prescott may be allowed to reopen the lake later this week.
Area: 9,402 acres
Fire status date: April 18
(Updated May 9)
Location: About 14 miles northeast of Flagstaff
What we know: High winds and high temperatures on Sunday sparked fires and crews are reinforcing lines around active areas, according to the Coconino National Forest. All evacuated areas were allowed to return to their homes. Firefighters have downgraded updates on the blaze and are cleaning up. About 51 people are affected by the fire.
Evacuations and closures: Nothing
Area: 19,075 acres
Fire status date: April 17
Fires with 100% containment
Locklin’s Fire: 112 acres (Confined to April 30)