ANCHORAGE – Rain, cooler temperatures and firefighting efforts have helped to keep the McHugh Fire in check. Firefighters will take advantage of those favorable conditions today to continue containing the fire on the ground and from the air. The fire remains at 842-acres and is seven percent contained.
Members of the Tahoe Hotshots prepare to go back to work after a lunch break Thursday, July 21, 2016. They are part of a squad cutting a saw line along the left flank of the McHugh Fire burning just south of Anchorage. The firefighters are working in steep, rocky terrain littered with large downed trees. Sam Harrel/Alaska Division of Forestry
The Alaska Interagency Incident Management team will hold a community meeting tonight at 7 p.m. at South Anchorage High School to update residents on the status of firefighting efforts. South High is at 13400 Elmore Road.
An air quality advisory remained in effect this morning for Anchorage and Eagle River, due to smoke from the fire. Those with respiratory issues are advised to avoid outdoor activities and physical exertion.
Widespread, heavy rain today will help moderate fire behavior and enable Hotshot crews to continue their efforts to create and reinforce a containment line on the west side of the fire. Firefighters are cutting trees, clearing brush and looking for ways to connect with natural barriers to corral the fire. Firefighters are also scouting the steep, rocky east flank of the fire for areas to create containment line.
In addition, structure protection specialists are continuing their work around homes in the Potter Valley subdivision, which is about a mile west of the fire. Crews have completed work in the Rainbow Valley to protect homes there with a system of hoses, pumps and sprinklers. Fire managers will continue the use of helicopters to drop buckets of water on the fire, as the weather allows.
Those living near the fire are encouraged to sign up for Anchorage Nixle Alerts. Nixle is a great way to receive important safety notifications from emergency service agencies. Register at https://local.nixle.com/register/ or text your Municipality of Anchorage ZIP Code to 888-777
Information about the fire can be found at:
- Facebook: Alaska DNR – Division of Forestry (DOF)
- Recorded Incident Information: 907-343-4701
- Anchorage Air Quality Advisory: 907-343-4899
- Incident Command Post Information Office: 907-742-8286
The Anchorage Horse Council is an evacuation spot for livestock in the Hillside Area. Livestock owners who need to shelter their animals can contact the council at 522-1552.
ALASKA INTERAGENCY INCIDENT MANAGEMENT
TYPE 2 TEAM
Tom Kurth, INCIDENT COMMANDER
PHONE: 907-742-8286 (7:30 a.m – 10:30 p.m.)