55 Homes Destroyed by Sockeye, According to New Estimate

Officials with the Matanuska-Susitna Borough say 55 homes were destroyed by the Sockeye fire. That number is more than twice last week’s estimate before responders had contained the blaze.

Listen now:

The original number came before crews had access to the worst affected areas.

“They’ve been able–over the last few days–to get out, and for 13 hours a day walk properties, look around,” said Borough spokesperson Patty Sullivan, “and… look at what was actually destroyed.”

In addition to the homes, assessment teams logged another 44 properties with substantial damage to outbuildings.

“Sheds, or green houses, or even out-houses,” Sullivan listed. “Sometimes valuable things were stored in sheds, such as dog sleds. So while it might be an out-building it might still contain very dear items.”

338 properties have been assessed within the fire zone, the majority–238–of them showed no signs of structure damage. However, there are still some remote properties officials have not been able to reach.

Borough officials are holding a meeting Tuesday on next steps in the damage assessment process for those affected by the fire at the Willow Community Center from 4-8pm.