Saturday, April 9, 2016

Firefighters Return From the Topock Fire

Topock, Az - 

On April 6th, 2016, multiple local, state and federal resources were dispatched to the Topock Fire, burning on the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge in mostly riparian fuels including salt cedar south of Topock, Az. The fire which started around 4 AM, quickly grew to 25 acres pushing the fire south from the New South Dike rd and jumped the Colorado River. Orders began to come in around 10 AM as the fire was threatening both Pirates Cove and the Topock Marina. E511 (PNP), A125 (GOV), E1102 (BUK), E3661 (CRD), E2 (GOL), B84 (MOV), Batt. 9 (FMM) and miscellaneous overhead were the first arriving units to a rapidly expanding fire.

Fire activity upon E511's arrival
E511, E1102 and E2 were assigned to structure protection at the Topock Marina under Battalion 9 where firefighters triaged the marina and adjacent mobile home park. Multiple helicopters and fire boats began suppressing the fire while engines held the South Dike Rd, working into the evening.

Wind shift begins on division Alpha as seen from the Topock Marina

Fire intensity begins to pick up as wind and fuels allign
Around 9:30 PM, hand crews and engines began a firing operation when am unexpected wind shift occurred, aligning with fuels and the fire made a push towards the Topock Marina. E511 was placed placed at the marina and firefighters deployed a hose lay around the marina while E1102 began prepping the mobile home park and securing the utilities. Firefighters began a firing operation from a fire boat on the north side of the marina which was successful. E511 continued to work on the fire for the next 2 days, assisting hand crews with mopping up the fire perimeter along the New South Dike rd. On April 8th, the fire received much needed rain fall and E511 was released from the incident later that evening. The fire acreage recorded was 2,200 acres.

The fire making a push towards the marina
Firing operation on the north side of the marina to remove the fuels in front of the fire front

Story and Photos by Fire Captain Ron Hood

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