Chilly Weather Helping Idaho Firefighters

Sep 12, 2012

The sheriff in Lemhi County today lifted an evacuation order for about 25 homes in the Indian Creek area.  The sheriff cited recent success in fighting the Mustang Complex, and cooler weather as factors in the decision.  

Those residents were evacuated on August 23.  Other evacuation orders, including Sunday’s that affected around 400 homes, are still in effect. 

Firefighters began their work today with temperatures below freezing.  Temperatures in the higher elevations were in the teens.  Highs today are expected to reach about 70 this afternoon. 

Higher humidity is also helping slow the advance of the Mustang Complex fire.  It’s burned nearly 295,000 acres.  Much of Tuesday’s growth was attributed to firefighters planned burnouts, which officials say were successful. 

The burnouts included those around North Fork.  Fire spokeswoman Melissa Yunas says firefighters lit fires about halfway up the mountain on the outskirts of the small town.  Those fires then merged with the Mustang Complex fire and both proceeded to burnout.  As a result, she says all structures near the intersection of Highway 93 and Salmon River Road were saved. 

Authorities are asking the public to limit use of Highway 93 in the region to make it easier for crews to get around.