Loon Lake Fire declared contained
Fire Managers are beginning to demobilize the response to the Loon Lake Fire, after reaching 100 percent containment over the weekend. The fire has burned for over a week near Sterling. Incident Commander Bryan Quimby made the announcement in his video update.
“We are doing a formal transition down to a lower level of incident management today. We’re doing that today because we’ve met our objectives in suppressing the Loon Lake Fire.”
He added that the strong response to the lightning-caused blaze was critical in the fire-fighter’s success.
“We have some pretty moderating weather conditions combined with the really aggressive initial attack with the local area and multiple crews from around the state of Alaska and different agencies. We were able to really get a handle on this fire quickly,” Quimby said. “And then all of the work that's been done out there is just to ensure a really good product to leave for the Kenai national wildlife refuge and the Kenai Kodiak Soldotna area forestry, and so that we don't have any concerns about this fire spreading and potentially growing larger throughout the year.”
After the disastrous results of leaving the 2019 Swan Lake Fire too early, Quimby said the Division of Forestry is not taking any chances with the Loon Lake Fire, which started in the same area.
“It should be noted, even with the rain, we still have crews out on the ground and they're lining up shoulder to shoulder, and they're walking through the burned area and they're feeling all of the dirt by hand to find out what's hot and extinguished any remaining heat in the organic layer underneath the trees, to prevent this fire from rekindling,” he said.
He also said Alaska’s fire season is far from over.
“There's still potential for more fire as we progress further into the Alaska fire season,” Quimby said. “But as far as the Loon Lake Fire, we're feeling really good meeting objectives and transitioning out to the local units.”
The fire burned 102 Acres. There were 53 firefighters assigned to Loon Lake, and 25 will remain with the Type 4 team to mop up.