Posted: Jul 27, 2012 10:20 PM by David jay
COLUMBUS...Fire crews south of Columbus are hopeful Friday night.
They say the Skibstad fire could be fully contained sometime Saturday.
Columbus fire chief Rich Cowger says, the fire started in the Hermit Creek sub-division Wednesday night, when a piece of equipment malfunctioned.
Mop-up efforts are crucial now in keeping the fire from spreading, in case of a change in weather.
An afternoon rain helped put out some hot spots and mandatory evacuations were lifted at noon Friday.
Crews closed Cooney Reservoir to use the water for fire suppression efforts.
Tonight, the reservoir, too, is open again for boaters.
About 25 people gathered at a public meeting tonight.
Sheriff Cliff Brophy spoke to residents about the evacuation warning system.
The incident commander said crews will work to put out every hot spot around the perimeter of the fire.
"What always concerns me is you can get lackadaisical in thinking things are over" said Bob Fry, incident commander of the Northern Rockies Type II Incident Management Team. "It takes one warm day when the winds blowing to torch a tree in the wrong spot. i've fought fire in the are a long time and you really have to be aware of those possibilities and vigilant."
Fry warns this is the middle of fire season and advises residents in wild land areas...to protect their homes against the possibility of any more fires.