Successful Burnout Yesterday – Hess Creek Fire 7/23/19

Southeast corner of #HessCreekFire where burnout was performed on Monday, July 22.

Yesterday firefighters conducted a burnout operation on the southeast corner of the #HessCreekFire along the Elliott Highway between mile markers 61 and 65. The goal of this operation was to remove fuel (mostly black spruce trees) between the fire’s edge and the highway. Based on weather forecasts, fire managers expected the main fire to burn this area today under north winds that would have pushed it towards the highway. Yesterday’s burnout allowed firefighters to burn this area under more favorable southwest winds that pushed it away from the highway. Firefighters used both aerial and hand ignitions following a detailed plan developed on Sunday.

There were minor traffic delays during this burnout operation when firefighters were working along the highway. The Incident Management Team would like to thank all the motorists and professional truck drivers who heeded warning signs and drove slower through the area.

Other crews continued putting water on a small area where the fire crossed the highway exactly 2 weeks ago during north winds. They checked water systems with pumps, hoses, and sprinklers placed around structures to provide point protection if the fire approaches those structures.

Fire perimeter map 7/23. This map does not reflect changes that occurred yesterday.

Fire Behavior and Weather: Warm and dry weather yesterday allowed increased fire behavior but southwest winds pushed the fire away from the Elliott Highway and many nearby structures. Today a ridge of high pressure remains over the fire but winds may shift direction and blow from the north. Vegetation will continue drying which could increase fire activity today. This ridge of high pressure is slowly moving to the northeast, and some cooler and wetter weather may arrive with a chance of thunderstorms by Wednesday afternoon.

Public Awareness: For current road conditions, go to the Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities’ website. Stay up-to-date on current air quality information by visiting  

Start Date: June 21, 2019
Cause: Lightning
Location: Ignition approximately 12 miles northeast of Livengoood, AK
Acreage: 173,467
Percent Contained: 0%
Personnel: 84

Hours of operation: 8 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Contact Fire Information: 208-269-4413

Categories: AK Fire Info

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