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Crews are watching Katka Fire with close eye

September 6, 2022

Forest Service fire personnel are keeping a wary eye on the Katka Fire, with 43 personnel staged in the area, over-flights monitoring fire growth and retardant drops as needed to keep it from spreading to the north and west. But flames are within a mile of homes on the Westside, and the priority of firefighting efforts today have been focused there as fire conditions are expected to worsen overnight and tomorrow.

"The Katka Fire is putting up a lot of smoke, but it's not pushing or moving that aggressively," said Tim Enzarz, lead public information officer for the Kootenai River Complex. "There are two crews on the ground monitoring, but they can't get close due to the terrains, snags and deadfalls. It's too dangerous."

There are 43 homes between the Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge and Ball Creek, and the Scotch Fire is burning within a mile of Westside Road. According to Boundary County Emergency Management Direct Andrew O'Neel, several have already evacuated voluntarily.

For situations, Boundary County follows the "Ready, Set, Go!" protocol, a national standard for wildfire evacuation. Last year, Boundary County mailed brochures on "Ready, Set, Go!" to all county property owners along with their tax bill.

If you didn't get one or if you tossed yours without reading it, you can see it here. Those who'd like to know more can find the full "Ready, Set, Go!" action plan here.

Those not considered in danger are not considered to be in any of the three stages. Residents on Katka Road up from the lookout area and on Two-Tail Road and Misty Mountain Roads have been advised to be in the “Ready” stage of evacuation, to begin evacuation planning for evacuating their families, pets, and livestock. Know what you need to take and know the potential routes available to get you safely out of the area.

Residents on the Westside Road from the Kootenai Wildlife Refuge north to Farnham Creek have been advised to be in the “Set” stage of evacuation preparation, ready to evacuate immediately if it becomes necessary.

If conditions grow more threatening, residents will be notified, to the extent possible face to face by emergency services personnel and by dedicated community news , to be "set," packed and ready to load up on a moment's notice, Go.

Questions or Comments? Send us an email!

Mike Weland, Publisher

6931 Main St.
P.O. Box 1625
Bonners Ferry, ID 83805
(208) 295-1016

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