June 27, 2019 (ANCHORAGE) – The Alaska State Fire Marshal’s Office, in cooperation with the Alaska Department of Natural Resources / Division of Forestry, is implementing an immediate suspension on the sale and use of fireworks across much of Alaska. Made in accordance with Alaska Administrative Code 50.025 Fire Code, the suspension will remain in effect until further notice and includes the following areas:
- Fairbanks North Star Borough
- Kenai Peninsula Borough
- Matanuska-Susitna Borough
- Kodiak Borough
- Copper River Valley, including Glennallen south to Valdez
- Western Alaska, including McGrath and points west
- Tanana Valley north of the Alaska Range
- Northern Panhandle, including Haines in the north, Skagway, and Juneau to the south
“I’m greatly concerned with the heightened fire danger,” said State Fire Marshal Richard Boothby. “Our firefighting resources and capabilities on the ground and in the air are stretched thin. That combined with the weather forecast going into next week, the safety of Alaskans and visitors is paramount. The suspension of the sale and use of fireworks will assist in protecting life and property.”
In its request to the State Fire Marshal for the suspension, the State Forester’s Office cited “high to very high fire danger across most of the state, expected dry and hot weather, 90-degree highs possible … with a shortage of firefighting resources in the state.”
According to the Division of Forestry, 102 uncontained fires are burning in Alaska with a total of 273,551 acres burned. Two notably large fires currently under management of Alaska Type 2 Incident Management teams include the Swan Lake fire on the Kenai Peninsula, staffed with 511 personnel, and the Shovel Creek fire outside of Fairbanks staffed at 245 personnel.
The Alaska Wildland Fire Coordinating Group (AWFCG) is the interagency management entity that allocates statewide resources as fire activity and resource shortages occur. Fire activity is at a Planning Level 4 and the AWFCG has stood up a Multi-Agency Coordinating Group in preparation for a significant increase in wildfire activity statewide.
For wildfire updates and fire safety information, visit: