A rapid aerial assault by water-bombing aircraft has helped tame a small wildfire in the Rosie Creek area south of Fairbanks in check while firefighters on the ground mobilize to further contain the blaze.
The Rosie Creek Fire (#174) was reported by a private pilot at approximately 1:35 p.m. Saturday. The fire is located about 14 miles southwest of Fairbanks and three-quarters of a mile from Rosie Creek Road. It is about three-quarters of a mile north of the Tanana River and 3 miles south of the Parks Highway. There is no road access to the fire.
The initial size up put the fire at an estimated 1 acre with an 80 percent active perimeter and 4-foot flame lengths. The fire was reported to be burning in continuous black spruce.
The Alaska Division of Forestry responded quickly with an aerial attack that included four water-scooping aircraft from the BLM Alaska Fire Service stationed at Fort Wainwright and a helicopter from Fairbanks Area forestry.
Aircraft made multiple water drops on the fire to douse any visible flame and as of 4 p.m. the fire was putting up minimal smoke. Fairbanks Helitack are on scene attacking the fire on the ground and two helicopters are currently shuttling in the 20-person Type 2 Northstar Fire Crew from the BLM AFS and a 10-person initial attack module from Fairbanks Area Forestry will also be flown it to assist with containment and mop up.
“It was a good catch,” Fairbanks Area Forestry Operations Foreman Zane Brown said. “It was burning in continuous black spruce and we pounced on it pretty good.”
The cause of the fire is undetermined at this time and is under investigation.