Fire update: 8:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 1, 2019

Sep 1, 2019

There are message boards for the Caribou Lake Fire at the Caribou Lake trail head and at the gravel lot on Basargin Road.
Credit AK Division of Forestry

The Caribou Lake Fire, 25 miles northeast of Homer, is estimated to be 85% contained. The footprint of the fire remains at 904 acres. Forestry expects the fire to be 100% contained by September 4. 73 people are fighting the fire on the ground and in the air.
The Alaska Division of Forestry asks hunters in Caribou Lake to please stay away from the fire area. And to be advised that Forestry is using the gravel lot on Basargin Road as a staging area.
A Temporary Flight Restriction is in effect for the Caribou Lake area. The TFR does include a restriction on drones.

Nearly 700 personnel are fighting the Swan Lake Fire which is burning over 160,000 acres and is now 28% contained.
Cooper Landing residents remain in the Set stage of the borough’s READY SET GO evacuation plan.

There is a burn ban in effect for the Kenai Peninsula. Even when it’s raining, please observe the burn ban. Open fires are prohibited.

You can hear audio of the latest fire update anytime by going to kbbi.org.
Also, check in with https://akfireinfo.com/or https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/ for information on fires all over the state.

KBBI’s Kathleen Gustafson spoke with Chris Barth, public information officer with the Alaska Division of Forestry at 8 this morning for a fire update.

Transcript:

KBBI:
This is Chris Barth, public information officer for the Alaska Division of Forestry. Good morning, Chris.

Barth:
Good morning, Kathleen.

KBBI:
Can you give a short update on Caribou Lake to start?

Barth:
The Caribou Lake Fire remains at 904 Acres. There's been no additional growth on that fire. Containment went up to 85 percent yesterday, 85%.
They’re still continuing to work on a full suppression strategy. So that fire will be a hundred percent contained in the coming days.

KBBI:
Thank you for that. And I'd like to ask about the Swan Lake Fire.

Barth:
Swan Lake Fire -  that fire is currently 162,179 acres. That's the same number. I reported to you yesterday. So there's no additional growth on the Swan Lake Fire overnight. 29% of the objectives are met and I know you have some questions about that.

KBBI:
I do. The goal for every fire is not a hundred percent containment, right?

Barth:
There are different strategies for fires.There are places where there won't always be a containment line around a part of a fire, you know Caribou Lake as we talked about that is a 100% containment.  Swan Lake…there's some places where the fire comes up against bodies of water, so they're won't necessarily be a containment line there.

KBBI:
Let me just check in with you on a couple of pieces of pertinent information. First of all, Temporary Flight Restriction in effect at Caribou Lake and also at Swan Lake.

Barth:
That's correct.

KBBI:
And a burn ban for the whole Peninsula still in effect - no campfires.

Barth:
Only devices that can be turned on and off are allowed. What is not allowed is open burning, campfires or briquettes or those kinds of things. So it needs to have a switch.

KBBI:
And, firefighters are using the gravel lot on Basargin Road as a staging area.

Barth:
Yeah. There is still a heli-spot that's near the gravel pit on Basargin Road.

This is moose season, so I know there's been a number of increased traffic down there and people parking and accessing near Caribou Lake Fire. So just want people to be aware, to avoid wildfire areas.

KBBI:
And there are, I think, two message boards for people who are going out there to hunt or just to celebrate Labor Day - at the Caribou Lake trailhead.

Barth:
That's correct, Caribou Lake trailhead. There is a permanent sign board that's there that we've placed some fire information up and people can find out how to get more information. There's also one at the gravel pit on Basargin that we talked about earlier.

KBBI:
Chris Barth. Public information officer for the Alaska division of Forestry. Thank you for your time and your expertise.

Barth:
All right, bye.