Retardant tankers slow spread of lightning-caused wildfire burning near Tok Cutoff

July 13, 8 p.m. – The spread of a lightning-caused wildland fire burning near Mile 50 of the Tok Cutoff has been slowed with assistance from air retardant tankers.
The 40-acre Cutoff Fire was less than a mile from the scenic 125-mile highway that connects the Alaska and Richardson highways between Tok and Glennallen but air retardant tankers from the Alaska Division of Forestry were able to box the fire in with retardant and prevent it from reaching the road. Helicopters are now being used to drop water on the fire while firefighters with the TCC Type 2 Initial Attack Crew and a Type 2 crew from the Upper Tanana region are positioned for direct suppression tactics.
The Cutoff Fire was one of at least two wildfire started in the Copper River Basin area Wednesday night that were started by lightning strikes.
The other fire, the Chistochina River Fire, was reported at approximately 7 acres about 23 miles east of Paxson Lake on the Richardson Highway at around 4 p.m. At approximately 7:30 p.m., air attack personnel reported that the fire had grown to 60 acres and was 100 percent active burning in black spruce. That fire is three-quarters of a mile from a cabin on a lake but a wind switch is pushing the fire away from the cabin. There is another cabin on the other side of the lake with a dirt road leading to it.
The Chistochina River Fire is burning in a limited protection area and will be monitored by fire managers to determine if structure protection measures are necessary.

Categories: Active Wildland Fire, AK Fire Info

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