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Contact: Mike Johnson, Fire Information Officer, (559) 565-3704
Contact: Facebook.com/SequoiaKingsNPS, Twitter: @SequoiaKingsNPS
SEQUOIA AND KINGS CANYON NATIONAL PARKS, Calif., September 10, 2015 – In response to the current conditions on the Rough Fire, which is burning in Kings Canyon National Park and the Sierra and Sequoia national forests, the National Park Service issued an Evacuation Order, effective today at 6:00am, to park visitors, park employees, concessions staff, and residents of Wilsonia, in the Grant Grove area of Kings Canyon National Park. The National Park Service is working with the Sheriffs’ Departments of both Fresno County and Tulare County to provide the evacuation notifications.
An Evacuation Order is defined as, “Movement of community members out of a defined area due to an immediate threat to life and property from an emergency incident. An Evacuation Order should be used when there is potential or actual threat to civilian life within 1 to 2 hours or when the Incident Commander deems it necessary to protect civilians.”
With the increase of firefighting personnel and firefighting operations occurring in the Grant Grove area, and the potential for the Rough Fire to move into the area; the park management in cooperation with the Rough Fire Incident Management Team have made the decision to close the Grant Grove area, and order the evacuation.
At this time, Highway 180 is closed at the Big Stump Entrance Station. The Generals Highway (sometimes referred to as Hwy. 198 is closed at the Red Fir gate (which is west of Wuksachi Village). Sequoia National Park remains open and visitors can still use the Ash Mountain Entrance Station. Vehicles longer than 22 feet (including trailers) are not advised between Potwisha and Giant Forest Museum.
For more information on the Rough Fire, please call 559-332-2028, or visit https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4456/. Information will also be posted on Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks’ website at www.nps.gov/seki or on the parks’ Facebook at www.facebook.com/SequoiaKingsNPS.
About Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks’ Fire Management Program
For over forty years, our mission has been to use the full range of options and strategies available to manage fire in the parks. This includes protecting park resources, employees, and the public from unwanted fire; building and maintaining fire resilient ecosystems; reducing the threat to local communities from wildfires emanating from the parks or adjacent lands; and recruiting, training, and retaining professional fire management workforce.