State forestry firefighters snuff out small wildfire in North Pole

Wildland firefighters in Fairbanks acted quickly to contain a small wildfire in the North Pole area on Friday.

The Green Fire (#246) was reported at approximately 2:30 p.m. as a 1-acre fire burning in the vicinity of Lakloey Drive and Bradway Road.

Fairbanks Area Forestry firefighters took this photo of a small wildfire burning near Bradway Road and Lakloey Drive in North Pole as they were responding to the fire by helicopter on Friday, June 14, 2019. Photo by Carl Erhart/Alaska Division of Forestry

A helicopter from the Alaska Division of Forestry’s Fairbanks Area office responded with five firefighters on board. They estimated the fire was 1.5 acres with 3- to-4-foot flame lengths. It was burning in grass, hardwoods and light spruce about one-half mile east of Lakloey Drive and one-half mile north of Bradway Road. They reported there were several homes within one-quarter mile of the fire.

After offloading the firefighters, the helicopter began dropping water on the fire from a nearby pond while firefighters on the ground used backpack pumps to engage the fire. Both the North Star and Fort Wainwright fire departments responded but were not able to access the fire by road.

Helitack firefighters were able to contain the fire to 3.5 acres by 3:45 p.m. and an engine from Fairbanks Area forestry responded with ATVs so firefighters could reach the fire and assume command. An initial attack squad was ordered for the fire so the helitack firefighters could return to Fairbanks to be available for initial attack on other potential fires, The initial attack squad will grid for hot spots and mop up the fire.

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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