Alaska sees 5 million acres burned during 2015 fire season

A large fire is burning west of Aniak. (Photo courtesy of Mark Leary /NVN)
A large fire is burned west of Aniak. (Photo courtesy of Mark Leary /NVN)

Officials say the Alaska fire season this year has seen more than 5 million acres burned and is likely to become the second largest wildfire season on record.

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The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that on Friday wildfires passed the 5-million-acre mark – or about 7,900 square miles – and by Sunday that number had already risen by more than 56 square miles.

This summer’s total is only 13,000 acres sort of the acreage burned in 1957 – the second biggest season ever recorded.

Fires remain active in dry areas of the western Interior, southwest Alaska and the Seward Peninsula despite rain in most of the state.

Beyond Alaska’s fires, fire managers are expecting a request for help with blazes in the Lower 48 as fires blaze across many states.