Pier Fire Update, 8pm, 9/6/17: 25% Containment. 

Size: 20,864

Percent Contained: 25%

Fire Start: August 29, 2017

Location: Highway 190, east of Springville

Cause: Human caused, under investigation

Total Personnel: 1,689

Injuries: 5 minor injuries

Resources: 32 Crews, 8 Helicopters, 118 Engines, 21 Dozers, 13 Water Tenders

Fire Summary: It was a productive day on the northwestern side of the fire south of Bear Creek Road where crews mopped up firelines. Near Wishon, on the fire’s north side, firefighters continued to improve direct fireline along the Fox Farm Road (FR 20S03). The fire west of Sequoia Crest was held and is not significantly active. Crews continue to patrol dozer lines and firelines between Sequoia Crest and Alpine Village, immediately extinguishing hot spots as they find them.
The operational priority for crews today was the fire’s east side which was the most active area of the fire from Alpine Village to Rogers Camp. Efforts to complete the dozer line were hampered by increased fire behavior. Fire managers are planning a safer location to establish as contingency lines, then fire out unburned fuel between it and the main fire when conditions allow. Air tankers were utilized today to cool the edge, but it was still to hot to place personnel on the ground in this decadent brush.
In the Tule River Indian Reservation firefighters used existing roads as contingency lines to limit the fire’s spread southward. On the southwest side of the fire, ground crews began conducting firing operations in the grass and oak woodlands east of Springville. They ignited vegetation using drip torches and aerial ignition (http://bit.ly/2f3giXd). Residents will continue to observe flames and smoke looking up at Black Mountain as a result until the main fire is tied into contingency lines. The firing operation is being done in such a way to limit fire intensity, a strategy that was well planned over the past few days.

Photo from 8:30pm, 9/6/17:
Evacuations: Tulare County has two levels of evacuations: mandatory and voluntary. Mandatory evacuations are issued when the fire poses an imminent threat to life and property. Voluntary evacuations means residents should either evacuate or be prepared to do so should fire conditions worsen.

Mandatory: Sequoia Crest, Mountain Aire, Rogers Camp, Pierpoint Springs, Cedar Slope, Camp Nelson, Doyle Springs, Alpine Village, Wishon

Voluntary: Springville, Residences along Balch Park Road (County J37) north of Highway 190 to Bear Creek Road, Bear Creek Road (County 220) east of Balch Park Road, SCICON, Mountain Home Conservation Camp.

Evacuation Center: Porterville College Student Center, 100 E. College Ave., Porterville.

Call 661-324-6427 (weekdays) or 800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) Provide food, shelter, arrange for animal care, and other basic needs for evacuees.
Road Closures:

Closed to all traffic: Highway 190, east of Springville where it intersects with Balch Park Road. Western Divide Highway/HWY 190, west of Ponderosa, west of and including the North Road (FR 21S50).

Open only to residents (with proof of residency) Balch Park Road from the intersection of HWY 190 to Yokohl Valley Road.
Area Closures: Sequoia National Forest closure includes trails, roads, and lands around the Pier Fire: Closure Order No. 0513-17-34 https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/article/5548/39662/ CAL FIRE has closed Mountain Home State Forest, and Tulare County has closed Balch Park. All areas are closed until the fire is brought under control. Please keep in mind, suppression repair work will take additional time after the fire is contained, recreationists should plan ahead.
Smoke: Information for the levels of smoke in communities affected by the Pier Fire; http://wildlandfiresmoke.net/outlooks/2017/Pier#Main

People with respiratory conditions, young children, and elderly people may be susceptible to adverse effects. Air District officials urge residents to follow their doctor’s advice. For more information, see https://www.cdc.gov/features/wildfires/index.html or http://valleyair.org/wildfires.htm

Basic Information

Current as of 9/6/2017, 7:46:11 PM

Incident Type Wildfire

Cause Under Investigation

Date of Origin Tuesday August 29th, 2017 approx. 02:30 AM

Location Highway 190 at Wishon Road 7 miles East of Springville

Incident Commander Mike Minton, CIIMT5 Jeff McLaughlin (TC), Derek Staberg (CalFire TUU)

Current Situation

Total Personnel 1,687

Size 20,864 Acres

Percent of Perimeter Contained 25%

Fuels Involved

Dormant Brush, Hardwood slash, timber, including areas affected by tree mortality. Fire is located in a heavy timber mortality area. The southern portion of the fire is burning in a location with little to no recorded fire history.

Significant Events

Light winds and stagnant air flow moderated the intensity of surface fire in the higher elevations. Isolated pockets of fuel were seen smoldering throughout the day at lower elevations. Rollout diminished along steep terrain as fuels are consuming completely.


Planned Actions

Provide structure protection for threatened communities and infrastructure. Construct direct and indirect containment line where feasible. Plan and construct contingency line.

Projected Incident Activity

A full suppression strategy is to be implemented on the Pier Fire. Values at risk associated with the incident include human safety, private property, and associated improvements, electrical power infrastructure, Giant Sequoia groves, and cultural values. Minimize acres burned on privately owned and tribal lands. Apply tactics on public lands that offer the highest probability of success.


The Voluntary Evacuation Order has been rescinded for the community of Ponderosa.

Current Weather

Weather Concerns

Partly cloudy with a 10% chance of thunderstorms through 9 pm then mostly clear. Lows 65-68 lower elevations and 55-60 higher elevations. Maximum relative humidity 65-70%. Winds down canyon 2-5 mph

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