MARQUETTE COUNTY, Mich. (WJMN) – 10 Michigan Department of Natural Resources is still working to construct a containment line around a fire that ignited Tuesday afternoon near the south end of Goose Lake in Richmond Township.
They are using hand tools in a rocky area that is inaccessible to larger equipment. The fire is reported as 75% contained. The area burning is south of Marquette County Road 480 and north of County Road NC, which leads to the DNR’s Goose Lake boating access site.
“We don’t anticipate any problems with the fire at this point,” said Pete Glover, the DNR’s incident commander on the fire. “We will continue to be out here monitoring the fire over the next few days.”
The “gravel pit fire” was initially being fought Tuesday afternoon by 30 firefighters from the DNR, the Sands Township Fire Department, and the U.S. Forest Service which had a crew from Oregon on fire stand-by in the region.
“What helped us tremendously was the aircraft to keeping this fire as small as it is,” Glover said.
The U.S. Forest Service provided a Type 3 Helicopter, which dipped water from Goose Lake to fight the fire, an air attack platform for assistance with air operations and two single-engine air tankers which retrieved water from Lake Superior at Marquette’s Lower Harbor for firefighting.
“The great cooperation of agencies fighting the fire was on display to see for a good number of people in Marquette who watched as the aircraft took water from the Lower Harbor,” Glover said.
The DNR had aircraft overhead, two bulldozers, a skidder and seven large engines at the scene, with Sands Township providing three fire engines and an ambulance on stand-by.
Rain showers and higher relative humidity readings today also aided the firefighting efforts.
With warmer temperatures and intermittent rainfall forecasted across the Upper Peninsula, fire danger remains a safety concern. Use extra care with fire, make sure campfires are fully extinguished.
To find out whether burning is permitted in a given area, check daily conditions at Michigan.gov/BurnPermit.
Find out more information on fire safety at the DNR’s website.
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