Coconino County Sheriff Bill Pribil announced Wednesday that the evacuation order for residents affected by the Schultz Fire may be lifted. Affected areas include Timberline, Wupatki Trails, Hutchinson Acres, Elden Springs Road, Girls Ranch Road, Sunset Crater National Monument and Wupatki National Monument.
Sheriff Pribil met with officials from the Type 1 Incident Management Team, Sheriff’s Office, Department of Public Safety, Arizona Division of Emergency Management, Arizona Game and Fish, and Coconino County Health, Public Works and Emergency Management Departments.
The group agreed that, in order to conduct an orderly, safe re-entry into the neighborhoods, sometime Thursday morning would be the earliest it could be scheduled.
Officials are providing re-entry information to returning residents at designated re-entry checkpoints. The information included guidelines on smoke-related, health issues, utilities, transportation assistance, special needs, mail delivery/pick up, livestock/pets and other information related to evacuation.
Only local residents will be allowed into the affected areas. Returning residents will be required to present ID to Sheriff’s deputies.
Trailers, RVs and motor homes should not be brought in on the initial re-entry. Residents are asked to wait to bring trailers, RVs and motor homes until everyone has returned to their homes.
Large animals and livestock should remain at their current locations temporarily and, to keep the animals calm, they should be returned home in the evening hours when air operations have ceased for the day, and residents have inspected their property for any possible hazardous conditions.
It is important to note that the surrounding forest areas affected by the fire are currently under an Emergency Fire Closure, which prohibits citizens from entering the area.
Citizens found within this area could be subject to arrest. This includes all trails and campgrounds near the San Francisco Peaks. Signs have been posted around the fire closure area, which is considered hazardous, with possible fire activity, falling trees, and heavy equipment still working in the area.
The public will be notified when the evacuation order is lifted—through the local media, the Coconino County website (www.coconino.az.gov), Ready Coconino community notification system and Red Cross.
Emergency officials appreciate the community’s patience and understanding in getting residents safely back into their homes.