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Contact: Caven Clark, 870-365-2790
Harrison, AR: Around midday (12/10) two separate fires were reported along Arkansas Highway 21 on the north side of Boxley Valley involving a combination of private and national park lands. By the two fires had coalesced into one and continued to burn within the containment zone while firefighters worked to reinforce that zone with hand-lines and mechanical (dozer) line construction. Much of the containment efforts are on near vertical hillsides in very rough terrain.
In spite of extremely high winds overnight, the fire remained within the containment zone of approximately 425 acres (50 acres private, 374 federal), all of which is timber. At today (12/12) the fire was declared 100% contained.
Response has been directed by Buffalo National River’s Fire Module. Assistance has been provided by the Arkansas Forestry Commission, the Compton, Deer, Mount Sherman, and Ponca volunteer fire departments. Additional federal assets include Chickasaw National Park, Great Smokey Mountain National Park, Ozark National Scenic Riverways, Ozark National Forest, and Pea Ridge National Military Park.
Remnants of the fire will continue to burn out downed trees and stumps, much of which is left over from the 2009 ice storm. The containment area will be monitored until much-needed winter rains arrive. There are no reports of injuries, property damage, and no evacuations of any kind. The cause of the fires remains under investigation.
Buffalo National River encourages extreme caution during the extraordinarily dry season. Fires on the park should be reported to 911 or to park dispatch at 888/692-1162.
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