KNP Complex Fire Updates

9/23/21

Good afternoon,

This afternoon (9/23/21) I received a call from Chief Norman of the Tulare County Fire Department. Prep work continues on Mineral King Road and crew numbers are increasing. Their goal is to keep the fire north of Mineral King Road; he said if they can do that then we will be in good shape.

Chief Norman also said that he will call me again on Saturday with another update; however, if a significant weather event occurs or he sees any major changes he will call me before so I can share any pertinent updates with all of you.

Please keep in mind that I am not a fire expert; I would simply like MKPS to be able to assist sharing accurate, up-to-date, and pertinent information. If you have a question please email me at lisa@mineralking.org or by phone at (559)799-4009. I will keep a running list so that when I check in with Chief Norman I can have those ready to ask.

Lastly, I would like to thank everyone fighting this fire, we are incredibly grateful for the hard work and collaboration.

Thank you,

Lisa Monteiro

Director

Mineral King Preservation Society

lisa@mineralking.org

9/22/21

Hello,

Last night (9/21/21) I attended the community meeting in Pinehurst for updates about the KNP Complex fire.

Clay Jordan spoke first about the incredible collaboration between all involved agencies. I was very impressed with his ability to speak professionally and calmly about the fire, but to do so with a tone of compassion. It was very heartfelt and he made it a point to let attendees know that the priority for this fire are the people and communities. He spoke about the teams protecting the trees and infrastructure, but that, from day one, the priority has been and will remain to keep people and their communities safe.

Jon Wallace, Southern Area Blue Team Operation Chief then went into details around all areas of the fire. I will share my notes from the Mineral King portion of his talk.

Firefighters worked near Oriole Lake yesterday to contain the fire by driving it toward areas of mostly rock; they will continue work there today to stop potential spread to Mineral King Road. This is a high priority for the Mineral King Area, which includes all cabin communities. 

The Office of Emergency Services (OES) and Tulare County Fire Department are working hard in Mineral King. They have crews prepping structures to ensure a defensible space and they

will continue work there today to stop potential spread to Mineral King Road. The Mineral King Area, which includes all cabin communities, is a high priority.

OES and Tulare County Fire Department are working hard in Mineral King. They have crews prepping structures to ensure a defensible space, and they are moving more resources back there daily as they become available. There are crews working with equipment and by hand. Crews have been clearing vegetation away from cabins, watering areas, preparing the gel retardant and aluminum blankets if it should come to that. During the meeting Chief Charlie Norman from TCFD said something that really stuck with me, that once this is over and the crews go home, he still lives here, and this is still his backyard. He will continue to do everything in his power to protect this area and other areas from this fire 

Chief Norman from TCFD, Tulare County Board of Supervisor Larry Micari, and I spoke after the meeting about the influx of calls they received in regard to Mineral King and there being “no plan there”. They were both adamant that this is not the case. They asked that I please share the information above to reassure everyone that Park, the incident team, and everyone fighting this fire are working incredibly hard with limited resources and will do everything they can to protect Mineral King, Silver City, and surrounding cabin communities.

I asked Chief Norman if I could continue to check in with him for updates so that I can share them directly from him to our followers on the Mineral King Preservation Society Facebook, as well as share with Sharon Devol from the Mineral King District Association so that she can distribute this information on their blog and by email for those that don’t use Facebook. He agreed, so I will be posting these updates as I receive them.

Please keep in mind that I am not a fire expert; I would simply like MKPS to be able to assist sharing accurate, up-to-date, and pertinent information. If you have a question please email me at lisa@mineralking.org or by phone at (559)799-4009. I will keep a running list so that when I check in with Chief Norman I can have those ready to ask.

Lastly, I would like to thank everyone fighting this fire at all levels. Seeing the support in last night’s meeting was inspiring, and I truly believe that even when we are nervous or scared, we are stronger when we work together.

Thank you,

Lisa Monteiro

Director

Mineral King Preservation Society

lisa@mineralking.org

Photo posted on Tulare County Fire Department’s Facebook on September 18

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