The Rim Fire reached another unfortunate milestone today, it is now the 5th largest fire in California history, at 199,237 acres.
The Rim Fire grew more slowly today, August 29, 2013, than it had been, but seems destined to break the 200,000 acre mark. At 311 square miles in area, the amount of forest going up in smoke seems certain to affect both the current air quality for nearby, and not so near, residents. In a few months, another problem, poor water quality is a possibility for San Francisco with an unknowable amount of silt running into Hetch Hetchy Reservoir. The acreage burned makes the fire, as listed at the official Cal Fire website, the 5th largest fire in California history since 1932, when verifiable records began to be kept.
The good news today was the lifting of several evacuation advisories which had been issued by the Tuolumne County Sheriff's Department.
Cal Fire reported the following:
The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Department has lifted the evacuation advisory for Tuolumne City, Soulsbyville and Willow Springs. The evacuation advisory remains in effect for Ponderosa Hills and areas east, along the south side of Highway 108 up to Pinecrest.
Cal Fire also reports the fire fighting force is up to 4,927 personnel, with a steady stream of firefighters entering and leaving the active fire lines, Total Fire Engines: 540, Total Fire crews: 104, Total Helicopters: 23,
Total Dozers: 83, Total Water Tenders: 53 . The population of the town of Tuolumne was 1,779 in 2010, so nearly three times the population of the town of Tuolumne has converged on the county to fight the fire. The cost of fighting the Rim Fire has grown to $47 million and climbing.
The ENPLAN Fire Viewer shows recent heavy fire activity on the east side of the fire moving toward Yosemite and Highway 120.
The Predator drone which was brought in to find spot fire locations in the dense smoke is still in use on this fire.