The Bean Complex fires are burning along the Tanana Valley west of Fairbanks extending to the Cosna River. Fire protection is under the Alaska Fire Service.
The State Forester for the Alaska Division of Forestry & Fire Protection (DOF) issued an Emergency Burn Closure Order on July 1, 2022, at 11:59 pm ADST. It restricts all burning that requires a local or state burn permit, including uncontained cooking, warming, and signaling fires.
Of the five fires in the 101,734 acre complex, four are under a “point protection” strategy. This means firefighters assess the risk to identified points like cabins and allotments, and take actions to protect them. This can include clearing vegetation, setting up pumps and sprinklers, and intentionally burning fuels to protect these values from an approaching fire. The #327 Hutlinana Fire is under a “full suppression” strategy, where the objective is 100% control of the perimeter, and extensive mop up. The Hutlinana Fire has remained at 407 acres for several days and is 60% contained.
There are 224 people assigned to these fires. Smokejumpers are being returned to their home bases to prepare for new fires, and being replaced by Hotshot and hand crews.
- The #310 Tanana River Fire, 13,939 acres, has protection for approximately 22 structures in place at Deadman Lake. Work is also focused on the Tolovana Roadhouse at the confluence of the Tolovana and Tanana rivers. Firing operations at the Roadhouse are complete and risk to this historic structure has been mitigated.
- The #312 Bitzshitini Fire, 34,178 acres, has firing operations underway to secure the southern perimeter to protect 15 structures that have the potential to be impacted by the fire.
- The #315 Chitanana Fire, 47,444 acres, has continued point protection for 12 structures and Native allotments within 5 miles of the fire. The fire has burned around the protected structures without damage.
- The #343 Dragon Fire, 5,766 acres, has structure assessment and protection underway to protect four cabins around Mooseheart Lake approximately 6 miles southwest of the fire.
The fires are burning primarily in black spruce, most in areas with no record of fire in the past 50 years. Overall, the complex (except 327-Hutlinana) grew steadily with some moderation from smoke shading, gaining approximately 13,000 acres in the past 24 hours. Significant growth of all fires but 327- Hutlinana is expected over the next several days. Given continued hot, dry weather with the threat of lightning on dry fuels, the National Weather Service a Red Flag Warning is in effect through later this evening for the fire area.
Today, firefighters will continue to monitor and backfire around cabins and containment lines. Mop-up and snag felling will continue around the 327-Hutliana Fire. On the 310-Tanana River Fire, structure protection and mop-up behind firing operations continue. If weather allows, firefighters will use an Unmanned Aerial System (drone) to burn out fire line against the Tolovana River to keep the fire east of the river.
The Alaska Department of Public Safety has restricted the use of fireworks across much of Alaska. Please refer to www.dps.alaska.gov to see if you’re impacted. With the continued risk of thunderstorms, please do your part to prevent new fires. Any new ignitions will continue to impact available resources. Be very careful with off-highway vehicle travel or any other potential source of ignition.
Categories: AK Fire Info