SUMMIT COUNTY, Utah — Evacuation orders related to the Parleys Canyon Fire in Summit County have been extended through Thursday in some areas.
“There is definitely a threat to the homes and structures in these three communities that are being threatened. However, the big concern is letting people in too soon when the fire is not contained in critical areas and then the fire flaring up and threaten those homes again,” fire information officer Nick Howell said.
The Summit County Sheriff's Office announced the orders were extended due to weather concerns over the next 24 hours. The National Weather Service office in Salt Lake City has issued a Red Flag Warning for Tuesday from noon until 9 p.m. along the Wasatch Front, including the areas where evacuation orders are currently ongoing.
Thunderstorms are expected, bringing along rain that would make runoff a possibility in the areas where the fire has already burned through.
First on deck for Tues: thunderstorms after a long stretch (approx. 2 weeks) of dry weather across portions of the forecast area will create critical fire weather conditions. A Red Flag Warning has been issued in these areas for 12PM - 9PM Tuesday. #utwx pic.twitter.com/sorWSgipLv— NWS Salt Lake City (@NWSSaltLakeCity) August 16, 2021
While the wildfire has been mapped at just 539 acres, it remains only 10 percent contained with most mandatory evacuation orders still in effect Monday.
Here are the updated evacuation orders:
- UPPER PINEBROOK - Will remain evacuated through Wednesday, August 18 at 8 p.m.
- SUMMIT PARK & TIMBERLINE - Will remain evacuated through Thursday, August 19 at 8 p.m.
- LOWER PINEBROOK - Residents living in the yellow highlighted area below may return to their homes
The sheriff's office said they will continue to evaluate the evacuation orders and "adjust this timing according to weather and fire behavior." Up to 8,000 homes remain under evacuation for Lambs Canyon, Pinebrook and Summit Park residents.
According to an update early Monday, "Team #4 is working closely with the Summit County Sheriff’s Office to evaluate when it is safe to lift evacuations, once the eastern side of the fire perimeter is secured."
Officials say the fire's behavior was "minimal" Sunday despite gusty winds. Crews on the ground continue to battle the fire on the perimeter, as helicopters, air tankers and water scoopers drop water on the flames. The Utah National Guard is joining the firefighting efforts Monday with the support of two helicopters.
“Right now, we have approximately 200 firefighters assigned to the fire. We are expecting a few more crews today, so we have not reached the peak for resources yet,” Howell said.
Jordanelle Reservoir remains closed Monday to allow aircraft to swoop in and gather water.
The reduced acreage is far below the 3,000-acre estimate given when the fire first broke out Saturday. That number dropped in half Sunday, before winding up just under 550 acres Monday.
Despite threats to nearby homes, no structures have been destroyed in the fire.
Two lanes of eastbound traffic on Interstate 80 are now open to traffic, while all westbound lanes remain open.
Due to the extended evacuations and Park City High School being the emergency evacuation shelter, the Park City School District announced that it is delaying the start of school to Monday, Aug. 23. A day that was scheduled as a teacher workshop later in the school year will become a regular school day, and the last day of the school year will remain June 3. The district added that its "Elementary School Meet and Greet" will still take place Tuesday.