Highway 12 remains closed for now
This just released from the Lolo Creek Complex public information officers:
Incident commanders have evaluated opening Highway 12 to escort traffic through and into the fire area and determined there are still too many hazards in the area of the Lolo Creek Complex. The decision will be evaluated again at 5pm. Safety of the public and firefighters continues to be the top priority.
The hazards include falling snags, burning material rolling onto the highway, rocks rolling, and traffic congestion as crews and equipment work to get around the fire and put in containment lines.
A public meeting is scheduled for TONIGHT (August 20th), 5:30PM, at the Lolo School (lower gym).
A National, Type 1 Incident Management Team is en route to the fire, and will be briefed on the situation today.
Weather conditions today should be very similar to yesterday with slightly lower temps, slightly less wind, and slightly higher humidity. Fire growth is anticipated this afternoon, although it is very dependent on the weather.
There are confirmed structure losses, including homes. Deputies are continuing to assess exactly which homes have been impacted and are notifying the property owners. The Red Cross has an evacuation shelter at Christ the King Church, 1400 Gerald Street, in Missoula.
There are voluntary evacuations for residents along Bear Creek Road and down to Sleeman Road. Missoula County Disaster & Emergency Services has established a hotline for affected residents with information on shelters, care for large animals, and other information. The number is 258-4636.
No injuries have been reported.
Additional information will be posted to Inciweb under the incident name Lolo Creek Complex at www.inciweb.org.