McKinley Fire has taken 51 primary homes - Must Read Alaska
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Thursday, October 24, 2019
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McKinley Fire has taken 51 primary homes

SWAN LAKE FIRE NEAR STERLING HIGHWAY

As seen above in a photo taken Friday night, the smoke column from the Swan Lake Fire is visible from Sterling. Some areas of the fire have been burning close to the road.

Swan Lake Fire seen from the Sterling Highway.

The main body of this portion of the fire is 1.5 miles south of Sterling Highway. Aircraft have conducted multiple water scooper drops. Ground fire is currently visible along Sterling Highway on the western portion of the fire. The fire is active with trees torching within the fire perimeter.

Swan Lake Fire burning near the Sterling Highway.

MCKINLEY FIRE UPDATE

Total losses in the McKinley Fire, as of Friday:

  • 51 primary homes
  • 3 commercial buildings
  • 84 outbuildings

Most roads that were impassible due to fallen trees are now clear in the McKinley Fire area. Matanuska Electric Association is working to restore power to the area and has already reenergized the main line running parallel to Parks Highway. MEA is now making progress to restore side taps that bring electricity from the main line to customers. School is scheduled to resume Tuesday for the Willow School District.

The Red Cross has two emergency shelters: Curtis D. Menard Sports Center in Wasilla and the Upper Susitna Senior Center in Talkeetna, where a community meeting is scheduled for 10 am Sunday, August 25.

Donations Welcome

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

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