First holdover fire extinguished from the 2019 Swan Lake Fire

Published: Jun. 17, 2020 at 4:50 PM AKDT
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Firefighters have extinguished the first holdover fire from the Swan Lake Fire on the Kenai Peninsula. The fire was reported on Tuesday along the Sterling Highway east of Soldotna. Smoke could be seen from the north side of the highway near milepost 66.5 at around 10:40 a.m. multiple motorists reported to the Alaska Division of Forestry.

A "holdover" fire is a fire that remains dormant for a considerable time. Heat can build up underground for days or even weeks and then flare up in drier weather conditions.

According to the Alaska Division of Forestry, the hot spot was 10-feet-by-10-feet and was smoldering in duff. The fire took about 10 minutes for firefighters to extinguish and mop up the hot spots.

This was the first holdover fire from lasts summer's 167,164-acre Swan Lake Fire, which burned for almost five months. The fire was started by lightning on June 5, 2019. Thousands of firefighters helped put the fire out over the summer. It cost nearly $50 million in suppression costs. No homes were burned and no serious injuries were reported.

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