As a result of thunderstorms and dry lighting on June 5th, 2020 two wildfires were ignited in the upper elevation of San Carlos Apache reservation. Those fires being the Blue River Fire & the Dry Lake Fire.
With strong gusty winds, and low relative humidity the growth of the fire escalated rapidly. Fueled by desert grass and brush the fires reached a combined 19,180 acres burned.
Dry Lake - 578 acres
Blue River - 18,602 acres
Given that the fires are far from any buildings or homes, there has not been any structures threatened. 10 Tankers involvement has reduced that threat even more by working along side the crews and teams managing the fires. As more progress is made, containment continues to improve reducing the potential damage to any surrounding wildlife. Tankers 912 & 910 have done over 13 drops long the Blue River Fire equal to a total of 122,200 gallons of retirement, and 2 drops over Dry Lake equal to 18,800 gallons.
Our work has been heavily focused on taking down the large Blue River Fire over the last few of days. However, other fires ignited during the same time as Blue River and Dry Lake much closer to residential areas. Our Tankers along with other crews are simultaneously battling two fires north of Tucson that were also caused by lightning. Both the Bighorn & Tortolita fires began on June 5th and quickly spread to an estimated 4,000 ac combined. Thankfully due to their distance, no evacuations have been needed at this time. As the efforts of our crews and everyone involved continues to improve so too will the containment of these fires. As of now Tankers 910 & 912 have dropped over 37,600 gallons of fire retardant on the Bighorn & Tortolita fires.
Here is a video of one of our Tankers in action during the Bighorn Fire: