In the final update on the Big Meadows Fire in Rocky Mountain National Park, fire managers announced on Inciweb this morning that they will begin the process of transitioning management of the fire back to the Type III interagency team. Though fire crews have built secure fire lines, interior burning within the Big Meadows Fire may still occasionally be seen throughout the summer, until a significant weather event puts the fire out. Fire managers will continue to monitor the fire until they are confident it's completely out.
The park is likely to see a change in the weather over the next two days, and particularly this afternoon. The forecast calls for winds of 20 to 30 mph out of the southwest, with gusts reaching as high as 40 mph. Temperatures will be slightly higher, accompanied by lower relative humidity. It's possible that pockets of heat in the fire interior may produce visible smoke.
The Big Meadows Fire is now considered to be 95% contained, and the fire remains at 604 acres.
Inciweb also noted in a separate release that on the morning of Sunday, June 16th, a firefighter walking with his crew from field spike camp to the fireline, collapsed due to sudden cardiac arrest during the Big Meadows Fire. Prompt action by the firefighters crew in administering CPR, and the rapid response of fire-line Paramedics that arrived minutes later, contributed to the successful resuscitation of the patient, Luther E. Larkin, Sr. Mr. Larkin, 51, is a senior crew member of the Horseshoe Meadow Type I Interagency Hotshots based out of Sequoia National Forest in California.
An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) was used on site to resuscitate him. The presence of an AED, and the availability of advanced medical care on the fireline was critical to reviving him and obtaining a pulse.
Fellow crew members then transported Luther to the nearest heli-spot just as the requested medevac helicopter arrived on scene. He was then transferred to the medical flight crew and taken to a cardiac care hospital in Denver,Colorado.