Rapidly growing wildfire near Tok closing in on Tok Cutoff Highway

A rapidly growing wildfire approximately 8 miles southeast of Tok is moving toward the Tok Cutoff Highway and firefighters from the Alaska Division of Forestry are doing everything they can to keep it south of the Tok River and reaching the road.
The Tok River Fire was reported at approximately 5 p.m. near Mile 115 of the Tok Cutoff as the result of a lightning strike and grew to approximately 100 acres by 6 p.m. It was initially reported about 5 miles south of the road but was only about 1 ½ miles from the road as of 6:30 p.m. The fire is burning in continuous black spruce and being driven by erratic winds and wind shifts.
A helicopter is being used to drop water on the fire to slow its spread and firefighters are trying to position themselves to take suppression action on the ground. Both the TCC and White Mountain Type 2 initial attack crews from the Alaska Division of Forestry are on scene. More crews have been ordered to respond to the fire, also.
Visibility on the road could be impacted by smoke from the fire. Motorists are advised to use caution and avoid the area if possible, as there is firefighting equipment traveling on the road.

A photo of the Tok River Fire taken from the Tok Cutoff Highway. The fire was about 1 1/2 miles south of the Tok Cutoff as of 6:30 p.m. Photo by Clinton Northway

A photo of the Tok River Fire taken from the Tok Cutoff Highway. The fire was about 1 1/2 miles south of the Tok Cutoff as of 6:30 p.m. Photo by Clinton Northway

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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