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Crooks Fire morning update, Thursday, April 21, 2022: crews battle high winds, build lines

Crooks Fire
Ansgar Mitchell/Inciweb
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A helicopter flies over the Crooks Fire burning south of Prescott near Mt. Union on Mon, April 18, 2022.

The Crooks Fire burning south of Prescott grew by about 400 acres Wednesday to about 2,000 total acres burned so far.

Fire managers say the Central Arizona West Zone Type 3 Incident Management Team assumed command of the Crooks Fire yesterday and engaged with full suppression tactics.

Red flag conditions in rugged terrain challenged firefighters and grounded aircraft through the day.

Fire activity increased as wind moved the fire west of Senator Highway and to the north-northeast towards the communities of Potato Patch, Walker and Breezy Pines. Structure assessment activities are progressing in those neighborhoods.

Crews continue to construct fire lines in hopes of keeping the fire south of Forest Service Road 261 and from progressing northward. Fire managers say strong winds have produced extreme fire behavior and pushed the Crooks Fire in all directions, spotting outside control features.

Due to the increased complexity of the fire, the Southern California Interagency Incident Management Type 4 Team has arrived to help orchestrate firefighting operations. Resources assigned to the Crooks Fire include Type 2 hand crews, Type 1 Hotshot crews, 14 engines, and 5 helicopters.

Current evacuation orders remain in place. Information about current evacuation status can be found on the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Department Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/YavapaiCountySheriff/.