HOMES IN DANGER IN TWO SUBDIVISIONS
Residents of two subdivisions near the Shovel Creek Fire northwest of Fairbanks were advised to evacuate just after midnight on Sunday, June 30. Two shelters have been established: Randy Smith Middle School, and the Tanana Valley Fairgrounds, where animals are also welcome.
A Level 3 evacuation means it’s time for residents to go for residents of the Martin and Perfect Perch subdivisions, where there are about 52 structures in an area dominated by black spruce. A Level 3 evacuation means residents should not delay leaving.
The Fairbanks North Star Borough Emergency Operations posted this notice on Facebook:
MARTIN AND PERFECT PERCH SUBDIVISIONS have been moved to a Level 3 Evacuation notice which means “GO” Evacuate NOW LEAVE IMMEDIATELY! Danger to your area is current or imminent, and you should evacuate immediately. If you choose to ignore this advisement, you must understand that emergency services may not be available to assist you further. DO NOT delay leaving to gather any belongings or make efforts to protect your home. THIS WILL BE THE LAST NOTICE THAT YOU RECEIVE. Entry to evacuated areas may be denied until conditions are safe.
McCloud and Murphy subdivisions have been moved from a Level 1 to a Level 2 evacuation. A Level 2 evacuation alert means people should be set to evacuate, which includes assembling all the things you will need in the event of an evacuation. Be prepared for a moment’s notice because there is significant danger and likelihood of a Level 3.
The Lincoln Creek subdivision remains in Level 2 Evacuation status. The area of the Chatanika River corridor remains in Level 1 evacuation status.
The fire, which was started by lightning on June 21, is located three miles north of Murphy Dome, about 20 miles northwest of Fairbanks. It grew to 300 acres on the first evening as it burned through continuous stands of black spruce. It’s now over 5,500 acres and smoke from the fire is drifting across the region.
Some 550 firefighting personnel are assigned to this fire, which is not expected to be contained until mid-July. The Division of Forestry has deployed water-scooping aircraft, air retardant tankers and smoke jumpers. On June 24, Incident Commander Norm McDonald took command of the firefighting operation.
A community meeting is scheduled for 6 pm today at Ken Kunkel Community Center, 2645 Goldstream Road. For those unable to attend, the Fairbanks North Star Borough Emergency Operations team will be live streaming the meeting at @FNSBEmergencyOperations on Facebook.
The State firefighters are working in cooperation with the Chena-Goldstream Fire Department, Fairbanks North Star Borough Department of Emergency Services, Alaska State Troopers, State Parks, and Division of Forestry.
A temporary flight restriction (TFR) is in place in the area to allow for firefighting safety.