Lake County RACES/ARES
Lake County Radio Amateurs, Two Harbors MN
Pagami Creek Fire Activation
Lake County RACES/ARES [N0LCR] was activated by BJ Kohlstedt (KD0HHW, Lake County Emergency Manager) at 0500 on Tuesday September 13, 2011 for support of the Pagami Creek Fire suppression and evacuation effort.
********** Please Note **********
Mutual Aid Assistance (Amateur Radio) has been set up between Lake County RACES/ARES, St. Louis County RACES, Douglas County RACES/ARES, and support from operators in Cook County. We greatly appreciate their help for staffing!
- As of 1715 Friday September 16, 2011... we have suspended Pagami Creek Fire suppression support operations.
- After reviewing the weather conditions, newly available PSN and cell service, it became apparent that our role has diminished.
- We still stand at an ALERT STATUS because conditions may change at any moment and the fire may once again head towards areas that need evacuation.
On Monday September 12, the Pagami Creek fire grew from 11,000 acres to over 70,000 acres. The fire traveled an unprecedented 16 miles in one day, most of which was in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. The driving forces were low humidity, moderate temperatures and northwest winds at 15-20 mph with gusts to 35 mph. Downwind and in the possible path of the fire were residents and property owners near Isabella. The area is remote, with little PSN and cell phone coverage.
Our task was to be stationed and provide communications at ICP, SA, evac check points and evac shelters. Using the amateur radio LSAC 1 repeater system, our task of communications was simplified. Net Control was initially set up in the Lake County RACES/ARES (NØLCR) Two Harbors EOC, and eventually moved to the homes of whoever supplied the NC function.
Because of limited fire fighting resources from the Superior National Forest Service, on September 15 fire management transitioned from a Type 2 to the a Type 1. The fire was then managed by the Northern Rockies Type 1 Incident Management Team. Since the fire is now fairly well under control, on October 2 the fire management team was transitioned back to TYPE 2 and managed by the Superior National Forest team.
For excellent updates about the Pagami Creek Fire, please visit the InciWeb web site.
Currently we have personnel at:
Temporary staffing location:
Other locations that were previously staffed, but may open again:
- Silver Bay EOC: BJ Kohlstedt (KD0HHW, Lake County Emergency Manager) primarily stationed at Silver Bay with trips to other locations during the day.
Information for Lake County RACES/ARES members and mutual aid volunteers:
- Net Control (various locations depending on operator)
- Silver Bay (Lake County temporary EOC)
- Isabella (Staging Area, MCT deploy point)
- Trestle Inn (Crooked Lake, evac check point, AMCV deploy point)
- Finland (Recreation Facility, evac site)
- Kawishiwi Ranger Station near Ely (ICP, Incident Command Post)
So far the activation has resulted in 633 hours volunteered:
- Mutual aid volunteers, please contact your EC with your availability. Your EC will forward on the Lake County RACES/ARES scheduler.
- Current schedule of operators...
- Beware that you may be assigned to a remote location. Bring food, water, clothing, sleeping bag/pad/cot, tent, etc. Nighttime temperatures have been low as 25°f.
- Since the Proctor Hub Site is still down for tower construction, we are currently using the eastern half of LSAC 1 for the "Pagami Creek Fire Net". Specifically these repeaters: Bayfield, Lakeside, Two Harbors, Wales, Silver Bay, Isabella, Finland and Grand Marais. Be sure you have those frequencies, tones and offsets before leaving home!
- If you have access, listen in on KC0MKS-R EchoLink Node. No transmitting please!!!!
- Randy NØBZZ and Jim KDØDZX were at the Silver Bay repeater at 2255 on 9/15 and repaired the noise problem. Thank you Randy, Jim and Pat KBØQYC!
- ICP, Fire and EOC information on APRS
- The Minnesota State EOC, KØDEM, has been monitoring via EchoLink.
- Excellent incident information from InciWeb.
- More information available from the Minnesota Incident Command System.
Other sources of information:
[Any changes, errors, omissions on this web site need to be reported to Jeff KCØMKS]
- Lake County RACES/ARES: 445 hours (KDØHHW, KCØMKS, AAØAW, NØMR, KCØFTN, KEØZN, KCØUKC, WØNWO, KCØZZL, KDØCVO)
- Assistance from Cook County: 32 hours (NØWSI, ACØLF)
- Assistance from St. Louis County: 116 hours (KCØWCV, KCØNFB, KDØDHB, WA9TRY, NØAGX)
- Assistance from Douglas County: 9 hours (KC9JTC)
- Assistance from Carlton County: 31 hours (KCØRTX)