Weber Fire containment up to 20 percent

Keywords: Poll question,
Journal/Sam Green
A tanker copter pulls its snout from the water after filling up to dump on the fire. Enlargephoto

Journal/Sam Green A tanker copter pulls its snout from the water after filling up to dump on the fire.

Fire officials say the Weber Fire is now 20 percent contained as they prepare to send out crews to conduct burnout operations through the night. The acreage estimate remains at 8,930.

A news release from the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team C said that the burnout operations around communication towers on the north end of the fire have been very successful.

Firefighters continue prepping the southern portion of the fire perimeter in preparation to complete burnout operations over the next few nights. The rough and steep rock faces on the southern line make it difficult for crews to attack the blaze directly.The news release said that Mancos residents and visitors should expect to see and smell smoke over the next several days.  

Deputy Incident Commander Jay Esperance reports that possible thunderstorms over the next couple of days could result in increased fire behavior due to strong gusty winds and lightening.  Because of the weather forecast and dry fuels within the fire, potential for continued fire growth is high.

There were several dispatch calls of lightning strikes and possible small fires around Montezuma County Tuesday night.

A walk-in information center for the Weber Fire opens Tuesday at the Mancos Community Center at 130 Grand in Mancos between the hours of 10:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.  Anyone wanting to view updated fire perimeter maps and meet with information personnel one-to-one are encouraged to stop by and visit.

The 11 a.m. community briefing has been cancelled at this point, but the evening meeting at 7:30 p.m. will continue at the Mancos High School Performing Arts Center.

Mandatory evacuations remain in effect, along with road closures.  All inquires relating to the evacuations should be directed to the Montezuma County Sheriff’s office at (970) 564-4996 or (970) 564-4999.

The State line Fire in La Plata County is now 80 percent contained and one crew will be assigned to the Weber Fire.

There are currently 400 firefighters assigned to the Weber Fire.