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​Burn Hotline Phone Number: 907-267-5020 

 

 


BURN BAN IN EFFECT

​ Op​en Fires are NOT ALLOWED Today Due to High Fire Danger

 

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Friday, May 20th at 5:30 PM, Fire Chief Doug Schrage announced a burn ban in the Anchorage area. This ban prohibits open burning within the Anchorage area and applies to all open fires including backyard fire pits and recreational fires.  Commercially produced charcoal, propane, and pellet fired barbecues are exempt from the burn ban but extreme caution should be used when operating. This burn ban will be in effect until further notice.

This burn ban is pursuant to the National Weather Service Red-Flag Warning for hot, dry, windy conditions which will allow fires to grow very rapidly and may result in extreme fire behavior.  Weather forecast through Saturday include strong winds with gusts to 35 MPH, continued warm sunny conditions, and very low relative humidity.  Wildfires that may start would be expected to grow very rapidly.  ​

The Fire Department will be operating in a heightened response posture including the staffing of additional wildfire resources and the dispatching of increased resources on initial calls to wildfire events. 

​Residents are asked to use extreme caution when working with or around any potential ignition sources such as powered equipment, tools / equipment that may cast sparks, discarded smoking materials, or any heat source sufficient to ignite dry grass and brush. If working with these materials residents should be prepared to quickly extinguish a fire that may start by having sufficient water readily available in the work area.​


Barbecue grills (electric, gas & charcoal) are allowed today. Enclosed pellet grills (Traeger, etc.) are also allowed. 

Burn permits have not been available since 2017. Burn Barrels,burning trash, yard debris, leaves, construction material, woody debris including Spruce Bark Beetle wood, is prohibited in the Municipality of Anchorage.  These materials must be disposed of through curbside trash removal or the Solid Waste Service's transfer site or the landfill. Please use the wood lots, when available, for disposing of woody debris. ​

 

 How are daily burn approvals determined?

Daily burn approval is posted on the AFD Burn Hotline at 267-5020. Daily burn approval is contingent upon the Air Quality Index, Wind, Fire Weather Indices and availability of Suppression Response Apparatus. These variables are assessed each morning before posting the burn approval on the hotline.  

1.     The Air Quality Index is a measure of particulate matter in the atmosphere. It is relevant to the health of residents and is also frequently affected by the thermal inversions local to the Anchorage Bowl.

2.     When wind speed exceeds or is forecasted to exceed 10 mph, burning is not allowed. AFD is working to utilize all available wind speed indicators to localize this variable.

3.     The Fire Weather Index indicates the relative danger level for fire ignition and spread. It measures the moisture content of three classes of surface forest fuels. It then adds the effect of wind to report relative fire behavior.  This system tracks the effects of weather on forest fuels on both a daily and seasonal basis. It is measured at specific weather stations positioned in areas of high fire hazard.

4.     Finally, AFD also evaluates the apparatus available to respond to a brush fire. While AFD is the primary responder to fires.

5.     The Division of Forestry (DOF) is the primary mutual aid responder to the Municipality in the event of a wildfire, if needed. AFD staffs additional brush rigs during the summer months. DOF apparatus in Palmer supports the Mat-Su Borough and the Municipality of Anchorage with helicopters, air tankers and engine crews. Fires burning in other parts of the state may require assistance from DOF Palmer, as well.  

Firewise information is available at www.muni.org/fire and http://www.afdfireinfo.com/ and on Municipal Cable ​Channel 9. Prepare your home now, wildfire season has already begun!​