Arizona Happy Jack Tinder Wildfire Spreads to 8,000 Acres, Forces Mandatory Evacuations

The Blue Ridge Tinder Fire that started April 27 in Arizona's Coconino National Forest, near Happy Jack, had spread across 8,000 acres of land by Sunday evening, according to the Incident Information System.

The Coconino County sheriff ordered evacuations in all of the Blue Ridge Tinder Fire–affected communities north, east and west of Highway 87, stated a Facebook post on Sunday evening. Highway 87 was closed in both directions in the area. The Arizona Department of Transportation tweeted updates about the road closures due to the fire. Updates were also available on the DOT website.

"The closure stretches from milepost 290 at Clints Well to milepost 312, two miles north of the Elks Picnic Grounds," read the site Monday morning.

REMINDER: An extended closure is expected on SR 87 from MP 290 at Clints Well to milepost 312 due to the #TinderFire. No ETA to reopen. Use I-17 & I-40 as an alternate route. This Forest Service photo from Sunday. #aztraffic pic.twitter.com/wnYfMT336D

— Arizona DOT (@ArizonaDOT) April 30, 2018

High winds in the area pushed the fire to the north and east on Sunday. Structures were lost due to the fire, but it was unclear as of Monday morning what those structures were, said InciWeb.

More than 500 people were working to contain the fire, including seven hotshot crews (firefighters assigned to the hottest part of the fire) and three initial-attack crews, according to InciWeb. The cause of the fire was listed as "under investigation" and "human" on InciWeb. Officials asked that everyone in the area refrain from flying drones because they could interfere with monitoring and fighting the fire.

Two other Arizona fires burned on Monday but were closer to containment than the Tinder Fire. The Rattlesnake Fire that started on April 11 burned more than 25,000 acres and was 63 percent contained as of Monday morning. The smaller Indian Meadow Fire, which started on April 23, was also mostly contained.