A fire on Barley Way Saturday afternoon burned close to 100 acres according to the Alaska Division of Forestry. The fire was originally discovered at 1:30 p.m. according to the Alaska Interagency Coordination (AICC) website and was less than one acre in size. The fire origin appeared to be located near a home and farm field on the southwest corner of Barley Way and Spruce Road according to reports from the scene.
With dry fuel conditions and winds out of the south the fire quickly spread north and jumped Barley Way. The National Weather Service reported winds at Allen Army Airfield out of the south and southwest at five to 25 mph at the time of the fire. During the afternoon sustained winds were at 20 mph with a gust recorded at 28 mph. Relative humidity was reported at 21 percent.
A home and farm shop on the north side of Barley Way were threatened by the fire as the fire spread through agricultural fields and berm rows on the west side of Barley Way. Neither the home nor farm shop received any damaged from the fire. The fire advanced into timber and spruce trees before advancement was slowed.
Delta Forestry crews originally responded to the fire and local fire departments were dispatched to the fire at approximately 1:55 p.m. Forestry originally deployed five wildland engines, two helicopters, and smoke jumpers to the fire. Rural Deltana and Delta Junction Volunteer Fire Departments responded with two structural engines and four water tenders to the call. Fort Greely assisted with a structural engine and wildland engine.
Spread of the fire was active to the north until late afternoon with fire spread contained as the winds diminished in the evening. Crews worked the fire into the evening and established lines to prevent further fire spread.
Two additional crews arrived approximately 7 p.m. and were deployed on the fire. Some of the first responding crews have been released from the fire.
Crews are expected to work into the night and again tomorrow on the fire.
On Friday fire crews responded to a fire behind the IGA store that was quickly brought under control with no reports of no heat or smoke on Saturday. The fire was along the bank of the Delta River and is believed to have been caused when embers spread from a nearby incinerator. The incinerator was not in use at the time of the fire and the embers were likely the result of previous use of the incinerator or items being thrown into the incinerator earlier in the day. The Division of Forestry along with Delta Junction and Rural Deltana Volunteer Fire Departments responded to the midday fire.
On May 7, Forestry responded to a small fire on Spengler Road along the Delta River near where Spengler Road interests the Richardson Highway. The fire was human caused and reported to be from a small fire that was not completely extinguished.
There have been 55 fires reported in Alaska this fire season with eight new fires today. Total acres burned are estimated at 112 statewide with that number expected to be adjusted as better fire perimeters are measured.
A burn suspension remains in effect for the Delta Junction area with the possibility of rain on Monday.