Roaring Lion Fire Expands Almost 1,000 Acres in a Day, Up to 4,392 Acres
With 500 over people evacuated, one man dead and 14 homes burned, the Roaring Lion Fire shows little signs of stopping anytime soon and has expanded nearly 1,000 acres since Monday.
The new acreage for the fire is up to 4,392 as of noon, today, August 2. Yesterday at noon the fire was only at around 3,400 acres in size.
A new type 1 incident management team took over operations of the fire Monday night at 8:00 p.m., but Fire Information Officer Mike Cole says the focus today will be on trying to save structures.
"We got a lot of good work done yesterday [Monday, August 1], we have some hand line, some dozer line, but the biggest thing is to hold onto the line we have," Cole said. "We are not really going to be offensive today, we're going to be more on the defensive to hold onto what we have and get in there and protect the structures, especially areas where the fire has already burned through, areas where there are homes we have saved already."
More firefighters were on the way to the Roaring Lion Fire and there is a lot of equipment tasked to the blaze.
"Right now we have a little over 200 personnel on the fire. That includes five 20 person hand crews, several engines, a couple of dozers and, luckily, fire activity in the west is kind of slow right now so we have 9 helicopters assigned to the fire."
One issue firefighters have faced is morning inversions, which pushes smoke into the valley making aerial assaults impossible in the morning. To get full use of the nine helicopters, their efforts have to be focused in the afternoon when the smoke lifts.