Swan Lake Fire not expected to spread; Suppression Repair and Backhaul ongoing

Daily Update for July 28

CURRENT SITUATION:  Fire growth has been limited to creeping and smoldering within the fire perimeter for six days. Significant rain over the past 48 hours has resulted in little smoke and better air quality.

Residual heat is primarily on the interior of the fire or toward the north end, away from values at risk such as Sterling Highway, homes, and other improvements. There is a slight chance the fire could spread beyond its current footprint. It will be monitored by aircraft until fire personnel are sure it poses no danger to the public or the Sterling Highway. If the fire moves further east in the Chickaloon, Thurman, and Mystery Creek drainages, fire managers have identified pinch points where the fire can be stopped before endangering values at risk in Cooper Landing and the Resurrection Pass Trail area. Monitoring will continue for months to come.

Personnel and equipment have been repairing damage caused by suppression operations. They are re-establishing proper drainage on dozer lines, covering exposed soils with vegetation to reduce future erosion potential, and chipping piles of limbs and brush created during fireline construction. Land managers will continue to monitor and mitigate fire effects until a season-ending precipitation event occurs.

The majority of Incident personnel are being reassigned to other fires or returned to their home unit. The Eastern Area Type 2 Incident Management Team (IMT) will transition to a smaller Alaska organization mid-week. This smaller organization will manage the fire for the next few weeks. Personnel and equipment have been repairing damage caused by suppression operations. They are re-establishing proper drainage on dozer lines, covering exposed soils with vegetation to reduce future erosion potential, and chipping piles of limbs and brush created during fireline construction. Land managers will continue to monitor and mitigate fire effects until a season-ending precipitation event occurs.

WEATHER: Rain showers are expected to continue on Sunday with cooler temperatures. A high pressure ridge is expected to build over the Kenai Peninsula starting Monday. This will bring warmer and drier conditions through Thursday.

SUMMARY:The Kenai Peninsula experiences fire annually, however, the area of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge where the fire is burning has not seen fire since 1947. Historically, there is no record of fire in the higher elevations. Natural fire on the landscape will remove areas of black spruce to reduce future large-scale fire impacts and create more fire resilient communities.

SAFETY: Watch for construction zones, fog, and smoke along the Sterling Highway. Please obey the speed limit and do not stop along the highway shoulder in order to protect firefighters, construction crews, and other drivers.  Please use headlights. For current road conditions visit http://511.alaska.gov. The Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) includes the western portion of the Chugach National Forest and the Sterling Highway corridor. The use of drones in the TFR and the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge is not permitted. Current TFR details and NOTAM 9/0573 are available at: https://tfr.faa.gov/save_pages/detail_9_0573.html

 

Daily Update July 28

Swan Lake Fire Public Information Map

Open Fire Restrictions Interactive Map

Swan Lake Fire YouTube Channel

Smoke Outlook/Air Quality for Alaska South

About 2019swanlakefireinfo

The Swan Lake Fire was started by lightning on June 5th, 2019, in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Kenai National Wildlife Refuge.

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