Crews Preparing Giant Sequoias as KNP Complex Fire Nears

FILE – In this Sept. 12, 2015, file photo, fire fighters walk near a giant Sequoia at Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National Park, Calif. AP Photo/Gary Kazanjian

 

Crews are getting the Giant Forest ready before the KNP Complex Fire reaches that area.

They are removing fuel and applying structure wrap on some of the iconic monarch sequoias that characterize the most famous area of Sequoia National Park.

Lightning started the KNP Complex last Thursday when a storm came through the area.

The complex is made up of two different wildfires; the Paradise Fire and the Colony Fire.

Fire continues to threaten giant trees in Sequoia National Park (Courtesy: AP)

A community meeting is scheduled for Friday at 7 p.m. at the Three Rivers Veterans Memorial Building.

Air operations are providing support to crews on the ground as well as structure protection for cabins in the Mineral King area.

Cal-Fire and Tulare County Fire is providing structure protection efforts in the Three Rivers Community outside the park, including creating fire breaks with dozers.

Per Tulare County Sheriff, the mandatory evacuation order has expanded to include the following areas of Three Rivers:

  • All of Mineral King Road, from the intersection with Highway 198 to the end of the road
  • Areas along Sierra King Drive, Crest Lane, Hammond Drive, and Oak Grove Drive
  • Areas along Highway 198 from the intersection with Mineral King Road to the Sequoia National Park entrance station
  • An evacuation WARNING is in place for the rest of Three Rivers, after it was expanded in the late afternoon on September 14th. This evacuation warning includes all areas of Three Rivers east of Edison Drive and east of the Mineral King Road.
  • All employee housing in Sequoia National Park is also under mandatory evacuation. Kings Canyon National Park is still open at this time.

Explore a map of the areas under evacuation warning and order, as well as other evacuation resources, at www.tularecounty.ca.gov/emergencies.

Sequoia National Park is closed to the public. Kings Canyon National Park remains open, but air quality impacts are likely.

Air quality is seriously affected in Three Rivers.

Particulate matter readings have been in the “hazardous” range for much of the day. Communities further from the parks are also feeling air quality impacts. Track your local air quality at www.airnow.gov.