Officials Report Progress in Fighting the Slide Fire

May 22, 2014

Crews are making progress battling the Slide Fire burning near Flagstaff. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, the blaze is now estimated to be more than 4,800 acres in size.

Flagstaff Fire Captain Bill Morse gives an update on Thursday morning at the Ft. Tuthill staging area in Flagstaff.
Credit Ryan Heinsius

Forest managers are cautiously optimistic after conducting successful nighttime operations on the Slide Fire. Calmer winds and higher humidity are also expected today to help some 800 personnel fighting the blaze.

The fire broke out Tuesday in Oak Creek Canyon and quickly spread north toward Flagstaff. About 3,000 residents of Kachina Village and Forest Highlands remain on standby to evacuate should the fire move further north. But, crews have been successful in preventing the fire from crossing Highway 89A into the eastern portion Oak Creek Canyon.

A map of the Slide Fire as of Thursday morning. As seen here, the blaze hasn't crossed Hwy. 89A into eastern Oak Creek Canyon, nor has it crossed Forest Road 535 to the north.
Credit Ryan Heinsius

To the north of the fire, crews have conducted successful burnout operations on Forest Road 535. As of Thursday morning, the fire had not proceeded beyond that point.

Managers are hopeful their fire lines will hold and expect to have a containment figure soon. So far, no structures have burned and no injuries have been reported.