Fire officials call Thursday’s wildfire in Anchorage under control
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - An Anchorage wildfire that brought out a full response Thursday afternoon was brought under control late Thursday night. Anchorage Fire Department Assistant Chief Alex Boyd said the unified command that tackled the fire near Dowling and Elmore Roads was turned over to the Division of Forestry around 11 p.m. and crews were sent home for the night.
“Because of weather conditions, temperature drop, and increasing relative humidity, we were comfortable leaving the fire unstaffed overnight,” said Boyd. “And first thing this morning crews were back out on the fire continuing to work.”
Crews have managed to dig a fire break and hose line around the 13 acres that burned, and Boyd said they are confident that any fire smoldering inside the line will not be able to spread. On Friday afternoon no flames were visible, but areas of the ground were still smoking. Boyd said crews, including one that arrived from the Lower 48, will spend the next few days working to extinguish any fire that may still be smoldering below the ground.
Investigators said the fire was human-caused, but clarified that only means it wasn’t started by lighting. Boyd said there were two homeless camps in the area that were evacuated soon after the fire started, but so far investigators haven’t found an official cause.
“Just because we have evidence of camps in the area doesn’t necessarily mean that that’s what caused it,” he said. “Until we go through the entire process and determine what actually started the fire, or rule out as many things as we can, we won’t be able to make a judgement on what that actual cause of the fire was.”
A Fire Investigator with the Alaska Division of Forestry said they hope to have more information about the fire’s origin within the next 10 days.
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