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Medicine Park Wildfire – Situation Update 1

Alert Message has been issued by the Comanche County, OK Emergency Management.
Friday June 24, 2011 7:02 PM CDT

ADVISORY – LAKE LAWTONKA will be CLOSED to boat traffic on Saturday.

Click link for more info;
Due to active fire fighting in the area and numerous road closures, Lake Lawtonka will be CLOSED to ALL boat activity and recreation on Saturday, June 25 per law enforcement.
For full details, go to NIXLE.com


SITUATION UPDATE 3
4:30pm Friday, June 24


Fire crews continue to battle the grass fire which began on Fort Sill and has caused the evacuation of more than 500 homes in the Medicine Park area , destroying 13. Crews are working desperately to contain several parts of the large fire.  Winds and low humidity continue to fuel the fire and cause numerous flare ups. Rough terrain continues to hamper fire crews in their efforts to contain this fire. The fire in and around Medicine Park remains approximately 40 percent contained.

At about 3:30pm, the Fort Sill side of the fire near Lake LETRA, west of Medicine Park, rapidly expanded and jumped the Northern Boundary Road.  Fire crews , along with National Guard helicopters, quickly responded to this flare up and are working to contain it and prevent it from jumping Oklahoma 49 west of Medicine Park.

Local, County and Fort Sill officials have set up an Unified Command in response to this incident.  Local fire & law enforcement, as well as numerous Fire Task Forces from across southwest Oklahoma, Army personnel, National Guard helicopters and several support agencies continue to fight the fire. The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has also responded with their mobile command center to assist with communications, logistics and operations.

County motor graders and bulldozers have been called in to assist.

RESIDENTS REMAIN EVACUATED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.

DAMAGES
Latest assessments show 13 homes (7 trailers & 6 homes) have been destroyed.  Several outbuildings (sheds, detached garages, etc) have also been destroyed and an unknown number of homes damaged.

Approximately 4,500 acres TOTAL have burned.
- 4,000 acres on Fort Sill
- 1,500 acres (around Medicine Park).

INJURIES
One (1) minor injury to firefighter (foot)

EVACUATION
There are over 500 homes in the Medicine Park area, including Lake Lawtonka and east of Lake Lawtonka which remain evacuated.

An evacuation shelter is set up on Fort Sill at Honeycutt Gym (Ft Sill Blvd & Randolph Rd ) were 20 people stayed overnight. There are currently no residents at the shelter at this time.

FIRE OPERATIONS
- Two (2) National Guard helicopters have been assisting with fire operations since 11am.
- Numerous Fire Task Forces from across the State have been assisting (or requested).
- As of 4pm, there are approximately 60 trucks with over 120 firefighters ACTIVELY fighting the fire.

WEATHER CONDITIONS
As of 4pm, The National Weather Service in Norman reported the following; 100+ degrees, winds S 25-30mph, gusts of 40mph. Humidity 20 percent. These conditions should remain the same for the next couple hours.

POWER OUTAGES
Cotton Electric reports power has been restored to all members who could safely receive service. We expect to receive calls as residents return to their homes and will have crews ready to respond to any other outages that haven’t been reported by members or our crews.

 

Current poles lost are up to 11 but we expect this number to increase. We have contract crews in route to replace poles in the more rocky terrain over the weekend.
MISCELLANEOUS INFO
Agencies assisting with food and hydration include; Great Plains Service Center of the American Red Cross, Salvation Army, Southern Baptist Men’s Disaster Relief

ADDITIONAL UPDATES TO FOLLOW AS NEEDED.


Chris  Killmer
Comanche County
Public Information Officer

 


 

SITUATION UPDATE 2

1:30pm Friday, June 24

Fire crews continue to battle the grass fire which began on Fort Sill’s west range Thursday afternoon and spread north into the Medicine Park area causing numerous evacuations and destroying several homes. Fort Sill officials have advised the fire originated on the West Range in the impact area.  Fort Sill Fire Dept requested mutual aid just after 5pm Thursday.  At approximately 7pm Thursday, the fire jumped Fort Sill’s Northern Boundary Road and Oklahoma 49.

Shortly after noon (12pm) Friday, the fire was re-fueled by winds which pushed it farther northeast where it crossed Oklahoma 58 just south of Lake Lawtonka. An approximate 80 additional evacuations took place due to fire threatening homes in the area.  That flare-up was contained shortly after 1pm.

Local and County officials, along with Fort Sill have set up an Unified Command in response to this incident.  Local fire & law enforcement, as well as numerous Fire Task Forces from across southwest Oklahoma, Army personnel, National Guard helicopters, an Incident Management Team and several support agencies continue to fight the fire. The fire near Medicine Park is approximately 40 percent contained.

RESIDENTS REMAIN EVACUATED.

DAMAGES
Approximately 4,000 acres have burned on Fort Sill.  Fire on Fort Sill is approximately 70 percent contained.

Approximately 1,500 acres (Off-Post around Medicine Park) have burned. Latest assessments show 13 homes (7 trailers & 6 homes) have been destroyed.  Several outbuildings (sheds, detached garages, etc) have also been destroyed and an unknown number of homes damaged.

INJURIES
One (1) minor injury to firefighter (foot)

EVACUATION
There are over 500 homes in the Medicine Park area, including Lake Lawtonka and east of Lake Lawtonka which remain evacuated.

An evacuation shelter is set up on Fort Sill at Honeycutt Gym (Ft Sill Blvd & Randolph Rd ) were 20 people stayed overnight. There are currently no residents at the shelter at this time.

FIRE OPERATIONS
- Two (2) National Guard helicopters have been assisting with fire operations since 11am.
- Numerous Fire Task Forces from across the State have been assisting (or requested).
- As of 1pm, there are approximately 50 trucks with over 100 firefighters ACTIVELY fighting the fire.

WEATHER CONDITIONS
Through this afternoon; 100+ degrees, winds S-SW 20-25mph, with of gusts 30mph. Humidity 15-20 percent mid-afternoon.

POWER OUTAGES
Cotton Electric reports scattered outages remain in the area after crews worked overnight and through the morning to repair damaged poles and lines.

MISCELLANEOUS INFO
Agencies assisting with food and hydration include; Great Plains Service Center of the American Red Cross, Salvation Army, Southern Baptist Men’s Disaster Relief


Chris  Killmer

Comanche County
Public Information Officer

From KFOR News Channel 4 in Oklahoma City:


Situation Update #1

9:05am Friday, June 24

Here’s the latest on the Medicine Park wildfire from Chris Killmer of the Comanche County Emergency Management office:

A grass fire which began on Fort Sill’s west range Thursday afternoon spread north into the Medicine Park area late Thursday evening causing numerous evacuations and destroying several homes.

Local fire & law enforcement, as well as numerous Fire Task Forces from across southwest Oklahoma, Army personnel, an Incident Management Team and several support agencies continue their response to the fire which is approximately 20-25 percent contained.

RESIDENTS REMAIN EVACUATED.

DAMAGES
The fire jumped the northern boundary of Fort Sill around 4pm Thursday.  Over 1,000 acres (Off-Post around Medicine Park) have been burned. Approximately 12 homes (6 trailers & 6 homes) have been destroyed.  Several outbuildings have also been destroyed and an unknown number of homes damaged.

INJURIES
One (1) minor injury to firefighter (foot)

EVACUATION
There are approximately 500 homes in the Medicine Park area, including Lake Lawtonka and Schoolhouse Slough.  The majority of those homes have been affected by fire and/or smoke.

An evacuation shelter is set up on Fort Sill at Honeycutt Gym (Ft Sill Blvd & Randolph Rd ) were 20 people stayed overnight. There are currently no residents at the shelter at this time.

FIRE OPERATIONS
- Two (2) National Guard helicopters have been requested and should be on-site assisting with fire operations about 10am.
- Numerous Fire Task Forces from across the State have been assisting (or requested).
- As of 9am, there are approximately 25 trucks with 60 firefighters ACTIVELY fighting the fire.

WEATHER CONDITIONS
T
hrough 12p; 92 degrees, Winds S-SW 13mph, & humidity is dropping considerably and will be in the EXTREME range by early afternoon.
MISCELLANEOUS INFO
The Medicine Park Water Treatment Plant IS OPERATIONAL. This plant supplies the majority of water for the City of Lawton and a large portion of the area.

Chris  Killmer

Comanche County

Public Information Officer

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