Elmore Sheriff orders residents in Prairie to evacuate due to fire

Elmore Sheriff orders residents in Prairie to evacuate due to fire »Play Video

MOUNTAIN HOME, Idaho (KBOI) - The Elmore County Sheriff's office has ordered the evacuation of the small town of Prairie due to a large fire working its way closer to town.

Boise BLM says the Pony Complex fire started at about 10 p.m. Thursday. In total, the fires have burned an estimated 30,000 acres, but officials estimate the fire could have doubled in size since then. | Idaho Road Report

The fire is heading toward the small town of Prairie, Idaho.

Highway 20 north of Mountain Home was closed for a time when the fire was burning on both sides of the highway from mile marker 102-111.

The highway has since re-opened, but BLM officials are asking that people use caution when traveling through the area.

BLM officials said several of the fires merged together Friday morning and have blown up in size since. Dry, windy conditions also pose an additional danger with the merging flames.

BLM and the US Forest Service currently have engines, bulldozers, and air tankers all working to control the blaze. They also called in Type 1 and Type 2 response teams Friday afternoon to help manage crews and resources as the Pony Complex Fire continues to grow.

Friday morning, the fire was primarily burning through dry grasses and brush, which allows fire to spread quicker, but is easier to control. Officials said as the fire moves into mountain terrain it may become more difficult to fight and harder to contain.

BLM says crews are working on mapping the fire to get a more accurate estimation on acreage. Stay with KBOI 2 for all the details as they become available.