Tanana Area Fires update, July 12

Facts at a Glance

TOTAL ACRES: 516,488

Spicer Creek (4 mi. N Tanana) ~ 147,094 acres
Harper Bend (6 mi. SE Tanana) ~35,123 acres
Moose Point (~55 mi. W Tanana) ~23,761 acres
Kokrine (~50 mi. W Tanana) ~4,811 acres;
Bering Creek (37 mi. SW Tanana) ~227,002 acres
Hay Slough (6 mi. SE Tanana) ~ 78,697 acres

Date Started: 06/19/2015

Percent Containment: 0%
Personnel: 277, including various support/logistics personnel; Two Type 2 – IA crews; three, Type 1- Interagency Hotshot Crews
Aircraft: One, Type 2 helicopter and one Type 3 helicopter.
Equipment: 16 boats, 2 dozers, 3 watertenders, 2 engines
Cause: Lightning
Cooperating Agencies: Alaska Fire Service, Bureau of Land Management, Alaska Division of Forestry, Tanana Tribal Council, Tanana Chiefs Conference (TCC), Doyon, Tanana Volunteer Fire Department, City of Tanana

The Spicer Creek, Harper Bend, Moose Point, Kokrine, Bering Creek and Hay Slough fires are burning on the Alaska Fire Service (AFS) Tanana Fire Management Zone. Jim Grant’s Eastern Area Incident Management Team (IMT) has management responsibility for all Tanana Fire Management Zone Fires. The only exception is the Hay Slough Fire, which is being jointly managed by Grant’s IMT and Greer’s Rocky Mountain IMT Black.

Yesterday (Saturday) and last night, Tanana area fires experienced moderate growth. The Spicer Fire continued to back down the ridge toward Bear Creek on the south flank northwest of Tanana and west of Site Road. It continued to spot in front of itself as it backed down the ridge. On the east side of Site Road, the fire is backing its way slowly south down the big ridge between the road and Mission Creek. The fire is approximately 1 ½ miles north of the nearest inhabited structure along Site Road. The southern flank of the fire now measures over 50 miles across; the total perimeter around the fire is well over 170 miles.

Fire crews around the community of Tanana (including in the Site Road and Mission Hill areas) continued to double-check, test, and improve waterline hoselays in and around Tanana, including those located along the previously constructed dozer line extending east from Site Road to Mission Creek. Similar work was conducted at structures located along the Yukon and Tanana rivers.

Today, fire crews will again double-check and test the pumps, hoselays and sprinkler systems installed for protection throughout the village, on the dozerline off Site Road, and at structures along the Yukon and Tanana rivers. Also, fish camps and cabins further up the Tanana River from the Hay Slough Fire will be evaluated for protection measures. Today’s winds from the east present an opportunity to reduce some of the fuels between the Spicer Creek Fire and the community of Tanana. Crews and other fire personnel are preparing and prepping for limited burnout operations on the west side of Site Road if weather and fire conditions allow, by hand and aerial ignition with a helicopter.

Warmer weather, increased winds, and lower relative humidity will continue today. It is expected to be mostly sunny, with temperatures around 70, and humidity in the mid-30s. Winds will be out of the east. Tonight will be mostly cloudy, with temperatures around 50 degrees. Humidity is expected to be anywhere from 51 to 68%. Winds are predicted at 5-12 mph out of the east. There is a slight chance of isolated showers after midnight. An increase in humidity is forecast for the next few days. Monday calls for isolated rainstorms and thundershowers throughout the day, with temperatures around 70, and humidity around 51%. Winds will become southerly at 5-8 mph. The forecast for Tuesday through Thursday is mostly cloudy with chances of rain each day.

Special Announcements: The next Tanana public meeting will be held Monday, July 13, at noon at the Tanana Community Hall to provide fire information updates. A voluntary evacuation notice remains in effect for the village of Tanana. A dense smoke advisory remains in effect for the Tanana area, with air quality in the unhealthy to hazardous air quality range.

For more info: Please contact Information Officers, Bill Paxton or Kristen Miller, Tanana school ICP, at 907-987-9835 or TananaAreaFires2015@gmail.com. Inciweb (http://inciweb.nwcg.gov) also provides fire information. From the Inciweb homepage, select “Spicer Creek” fires from the drop down list at the top right of the page. To obtain fire information regarding the Hay Slough fire, contact Brett Haberstick at 907-672-3202 or ManleyAreaFires@gmail.com To obtain fire information regarding other fires in Alaska, contact the Alaska Joint Information Center at 907-356-5511.

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