Rafael fire wreaks havoc! Coconino County Sheriff’s Office orders an immediate evacuation.
By: Sherly J. Victor
Rafael fire wreaks havoc on the west side of Sedona. The Coconino County officials have issued evacuation orders due to the Rafael fire, near the Sycamore canyon. The Rafael fires, which is burning in the west of Sedona, was the result of dry thunderstorms in the Prescott National Forest. The fire was discovered, first, on June 18th, when it began near Perkinsville.
“Strong winds from the west in combination with terrain, and low humidity caused increased fire behaviour [on June 20], increasing the side of the fire significantly,” read a portion of the statement released by fire officials. The fire has destroyed and burned 10,000 acres as of yesterday. The heavy smoke produced because of the Rafael fire, is visible from Sedona and Flagstaff areas, too.
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According to the tweets by officials, the camping areas near Sycamore Canyon and south of Forest Service Road 535 off Forest Service Road 231, are in GO status. While, the Garland Prairie area, is in READY status. GO status means that people in the area have to evacuate immediately due to the wildfire. And READY status means that people need to be prepared for evacuation.
The officials have asked the people to make proper family evacuation plan, including communication with out-of-town contacts. The people are also guided to have an emergency kit prepared with necessary medicines, food, water and other supplies for the next 72 hours.
The strong winds from the west, along with the low humidity of the terrain, is causing a significant increase in the fire. The Arizona Central West Zone Type 3 Incident Management Team has taken up the task of management of the Rafael Fire.
The nearby, Fossil Creek recreation area is closed. Public land including Tonto, Coconino, and Prescott National Forest lands, roads, and trails is also restricted for public safety.
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