Tetlin River Fire now 25 percent contained; mop-up work continues

The 818-acre Tetlin River Fire south of Tok is now 25 percent contained and crews continued to increase mop-up depth around the fire on Thursday, according to the Alaska Division of Forestry.
Firefighters succeeded in getting a hose line put in around the entire fire perimeter and are pumping water from nearby lakes, ponds and streams to douse any hotspots that are found.
Crews continued to focus on removal of hazard trees along the Tetlin River corridor to facilitate navigation for firefighters and local residents in boats. Crews are also removing hazard trees along a main trail used by local residents during the winter.
There are a total of 334 personnel working on the fire as of Thursday, including 10 Alaska hand crews that are camped out around the perimeter of the fire cutting saw line and gridding for hotspots.
Conditions remain hot and dry in the Tok area, with similar conditions forecast for the next two days. The fire has received no measurable precipitation since it started on June 17.
There are still pockets of unburned fuel in the interior of the fire that produce isolated tree torching and occasional columns of smoke are visible from the village.

A helicopter equipped with a water dropping bucket douses hotspots on the Tetlin River Fire on Tuesday, June 21, 2016. Photo by Sam Harrel/Alaska Division of Forestry

A helicopter equipped with a water dropping bucket douses hotspots on the Tetlin River Fire on Tuesday, June 21, 2016. Photo by Sam Harrel/Alaska Division of Forestry

Fire managers are working closely with the Tetlin Tribal Council to keep village leaders apprised of the work that is being done and to ensure they are addressing any concerns villagers may have in regard to the fire. Tetlin Tribal Council Chief Michael Sam was scheduled to get an aerial tour of the fire on Thursday to see the extent of the fire around the village and the work that has been done by firefighters.A community meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. today in Tetlin.
The Tetlin River Fire started on Friday, June 17 and quickly advanced on the village driven by south winds. The fire came less than a mile from the village, which is located 16 miles off the Alaska Highway just south of Tok
The fire is believed to be human caused and is under investigation.

About Alaska Division of Forestry

Alaska Division of Forestry website: http://forestry.alaska.gov/ Mission: The Alaska Division of Forestry proudly serves Alaskans through forest management and wildland fire protection. The Wildland Fire and Aviation Program provides safe, cost-effective and efficient fire protection services and related fire and aviation management activities to protect human life and values on State, private and municipal lands. The wildland fire program cooperates with other wildland fire agencies on a statewide, interagency basis.

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