Region 23 Complex Forces Evacuations

Key Facts
The Region 23 Complex consists of two fires, the West Ash near Chadron and Douthit Fire near Crawford, Nebraska. Both fires were started by lightning with smoke reported on 8/28/2012 at 2 pm. Currently containment is 0% and combined size estimate is 25,000 acres. Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team C, Joe Lowe Incident Commander, took command of the fire from Incident Commander, Westin Birch of the Nebraska National Forest at 6 a.m. this morning.

Evacuations are in effect
West Ash Fire evacuations are in effect for the area west of the fire and include:

  • Table Road east to Highway 385

  • Country Club and Old Country Club Road east to Highway 385.

  • Deadhorse Road north to Highway 20.


Pre-evacuation orders have been issued to residents on the east of Highway 385 of the West Ash
Pre-evacuation orders mean residents are requested to be ready to evacuate the
area on short notice.

Douthit Fire Evacuations include:

  • The Hudson Ming Bison Kill research and visitor center.

  • Areas between Sand Creek Road and Rim Rock Road.

102 residences and 152 individuals are currently evacuated in addition to Chadron State Park and

Pine Ridge Job Corp.


As of 9 a.m. August 30, 2012, Highway 385 was open to one lane traffic with a pilot car from mile marker 160 to 167. For further information call 511 or visit

Today’s fire activity is expected to have significant growth potential due to red flag conditions, Fire fighters will focus on reconning the fire: putting resources in place to start suppression efforts and structure protection.

Participating agencies include: The State of Nebraska, Nebraska National Forest, Nebraska State Forest, local volunteer fire departments, the Nebraska Park Service, Nebraska National Guard, Dawes and Sioux County Sheriff, Nebraska State Patrol and local municipalities.

Today’s forecast is calling for continued warmer, drier weather this afternoon. The extended forecast is for a warming and drying trend through the weekend.

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