Hot, Dry Weather Fuels an Early Start to Fire Season

Wildfire fighters are busy responding to new starts as hot dry breezy weather continues in the interior. Most of the human caused fires are being knocked down quickly, but a few are requiring larger responses.

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The Bolgen Creek fire has burned over 500 acres along the Steese Highway, between Circle and Central, where Alaska Fire service spokesman Sam Harrel says its moving through an area that burned in 2009.

Harrel says that making it tough for the nearly 200 firefighters working to cut line, as they try to keep flames away from private property, including Alaska Native allotments and corporation lands. Another focus has been along the Steese Highway, which remains open. The cause of the fire is unknown, but suspected to be human. Division of Forestry spokesman Tim Mowry says weather conditions are making it easy for people to accidentally start fires.

While most of this spring’s wildfires have been human caused, a few coal seam fires are burning in the Healy area, but as of Tuesday were not posing any serious threat. No lightning is in the forecast, but hot dry weather is expected to continue into the Memorial Day weekend.