Tanana Area Fire updates, July 14

Tanana Area Fire Facts at a Glance

TOTAL ACRES: 468,483

Spicer Creek (4 mi. N Tanana) ~ 167,444 acres;
Harper Bend (6 mi. SE Tanana) ~42,686 acres
Moose Point (~55 mi. W Tanana) ~25,790 acres
Kokrine (~50 mi. W Tanana) ~4,811 acres;
Bering Creek (37 mi. SW Tanana) ~227,752 acres

NOTE: Hay Slough Fire information available from Greer’s Rocky Mountain Black IMT; see contact information below.

Date Started: 06/19/2015

Percent Containment: 0%
Personnel: 249, including various support/logistics personnel; Three Type 2 – Initial Attack crews; Three Type 1- Interagency Hotshot Crews
Aircraft: One Type 2 helicopter and one Type 3 helicopter
Equipment: 16 boats, 1 dozer, 3 watertenders 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, Tanana School District

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 of the above fires except the Hay Slough Fire, which is jointly managed by Grant’s IMT and Greer’s Rocky Mountain IMT Black.

Information regarding the Hay Slough and the Baker fires is being managed by the Rocky Mountain IMT; their contact information is provided below.

Yesterday, Tanana area fires continued to experience growth. On the Spicer Creek Fire, crews spent the morning preparing and prepping for another burnout operation north of Tanana on the west side of Site Road. This burnout was a continuation of an earlier one done Sunday.

Hand crews were able to carry fire approximately 0.8 miles to the south on the west side of Site Road down to just north of where the dozerline takes off to the east toward Mission Creek. They tried to continue south to the Site Road/3rd Avenue intersection (1.5 miles), but cloud cover and a brief rain shower caused crews to terminate the burnout. Crews remained on the fire until early morning today to monitor fire activity and ensure safety.

Tanana residents are advised to avoid traveling Site Road because of the danger of fire-weakened snags falling on the road. Also, fire crews continued to double-check, test, and improve waterline hoselays in and around known structures located along the well-over 100 miles of the Yukon and Tanana rivers assigned to the Eastern Area IMT. They are also searching by air and water for presence of other structures on both rivers. On the Yukon River, this area stretches almost 110 miles from Moose Point upstream to the mouth of Stevens Creek. On the Tanana River, IMT responsibility  extends from where it flows into the Yukon upstream to the mouth of the Cosna River; over 35 miles.

Today, crews will monitor and double-check and test the pumps, hoselays and sprinkler systems throughout the village, Mission Hill area, and on the dozerline off Site Road. Over the next few days crews will go direct on the Spicer Creek Fire from Site Road west to Bear Creek. The south fire flank is now over 33 miles across; perimeter is over 135 miles.

Today’s forecast is mostly cloudy with scattered rain showers and isolated thunderstorms. High temperature will be around 69, and minimum relative humidity rising to 48-55%. Winds are forecast from the south at 5-6 mph. Gusty and erratic winds are expected near thunderstorms. Tonight will be mostly cloudy, areas of smoke, and patchy fog. Temperature will be around 52, and humidity rising significantly to 84-95%. There is a chance of isolated thunderstorms and scattered rain showers. Numerous rain showers are expected during the night. The forecast for Wednesday through Friday is mostly cloudy with varying chances of rain each day. Low temperatures s will be in the upper 40s and highs in the 60s.

Special Announcements: The next Tanana public meeting will be held tomorrow (Wednesday, July 15) at noon at the Tanana Community Hall to provide updated fire information to Tanana residents and other interested parties. 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 still 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
EMail:  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

EMail:  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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