Acres Burned: 7,657
Cause: Human – Under Investigation
Structures Destroyed: 11
Closures: west end of Skilak Loop Road and campgrounds
Water Tenders: 5
Total personnel: approx. 385
Current Situation: The Card Street fire continues to burn into the marshlands and recreation area of Skilak Lake. The fire is established in a full suppression area of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge and all actions are being taken to keep the fire at the smallest possible acreage. The fire has burned 7,657 acres since it began last Monday and is now 20% contained. Fire activity was minimal yesterday due to cooler temperatures and higher humidity. Firefighters were able to take advantage of the weather and made progress.
All evacuations were lifted yesterday afternoon. Residents will still see smoke and isolated pockets of heat in the area; firefighters continue to work in the area. Crews continue to construct and strengthen firelines. All heat found within 300 feet of any structure will be extinguished to ensure that it won't be able to reignite. A total of 385 personnel are assigned to the incident including 17 fire crews, 7 fire engines and 3 helicopters.
Community Meeting: A public meeting will be held on TODAY at 2 PM at the Sterling Community Center at the corner of the Sterling Highway and Swanson River Road.
Burn Restrictions: The Alaska Division of Forestry and the State Forester determined that it is necessary to prohibit the use of all open fires and activities which unduly increase the fire danger.
Until further notice all cooking, warming, signaling fires or any type of fire are prohibited on state lands, including state park units, and private and municipal lands within Game Management Units 7, 13, 14, 15 and 16. The term "open fires" refers to any flame source not immediately extinguishable or controllable and applies to any form of wood or charcoal-based fire, even in established fire rings. Gas grills, backpacking or camp stoves using fuel or compressed canisters which can be regulated and shut off are still permitted for use. Fireworks are prohibited in the Kenai Borough. More information can be found at www.kpboem.com or http://akfireinfo.com/.
Weather Outlook: Conditions will be cooler and more humid in the fire area today. Temperatures are expected to top out at 72 degrees, with mostly sunny skies and westerly winds to 5 mph in the afternoon. Fire crews will take advantage of the cooler weather to continue to construct and strengthen lines.
Closures: The US Fish and Wildlife Service clarifies that the Skilak Loop Road remains closed at the west entrance at the Sterling Highway to milepost 9.3 at the Engineer Lake Overlook. The road is open on the east end, to the upper Skilak Lake boat launch. Motorists are encouraged to please be cautious of changing fire conditions and fire personnel in the area. All campgrounds, public use cabins, and trails within the Skilak Wildlife recreational area remain closed to aid fire operations until further notice. Tickets will be issued to those violating the closures.
Injuries: There have been no injuries.
Cooperating Agencies: Alaska Division of Forestry, Alaska State Troopers, Kenai Peninsula Borough, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.