Alaska Digest

Posted: Thursday, June 24, 2004

Sunken boat raised

Salvagers were at work Wednesday evening in Harris Harbor raising a sunken fishing boat whose registered owner is near Iraq.

Juneau Port Director John Stone said the Nesteby, which sunk early Tuesday morning, was registered to a merchant mariner currently working in the Iraq area.

"It's tough to get in touch with him," he said, but there was a reachable contact listed on the registration with the harbor office.

Harbor Master Lou McCall said the cause for the sinking could not be determined until the boat is pulled up.

Stone said officials determined Tuesday that no one was injured in the sinking.

Wednesday evening, a crowd gathered as a crew on a vessel from Southeast Alaska Lighterage pulled the Nesteby partially out of the water, bringing it to a point where they could begin bailing out the water.

Capital Fire urges caution

Capital City Fire and Rescue warns residents to use extreme caution when they burn things in open space.

"With the sustained high temperatures, the wild lands and back yards within the City and Borough of Juneau have become very dry and the danger of a wild land fire has risen significantly," said Rich Etheridge, fire marshal of Capital City Fire and Rescue.

At this time there is not a ban on open burning. A permit is still required for any open burning, including burn barrels.

Below are some suggestions from the Fire Department:

• If the winds are over 10 miles per hour, the fire should be put out.

• Have a charged hose near the fire to take care of any spot fires.

• Keep the fires small and manageable.

• The fire must be attended at all times.

• Make sure the fire is out before leaving it.

• Wait to burn when there is some rain.

People who have any questions on open burning or would like to have a site inspection before burning should contact the Fire Department at 586-5322.

Police warn of burglaries

Police reported Wednesday afternoon they had received 37 reports since June 1 from local residents saying items had been stolen from their vehicles.

Money, cellular telephones and other electronic devices have been lost in vehicle burglaries. In all but one case, thieves gained access through unlocked doors while the vehicles were parked near owners' residences, police said. Police believe most of the items reported stolen were visible through the vehicle windows.

Juneau police advise people to lock their vehicles and park them in well-lit areas without any valuables inside.

In cases where windows have to be left open, they should be left open no more than one-half inch. Police suggest purchasing car alarms. They also suggest forming neighborhood watch groups.

Meanwhile, police say there has been a continuing string of bicycle thefts in the community.

They recommend people lock their bikes using chain-type locks, secured to sturdy structures. They say thieves often look for bikes that appear to have been stationary and unattended for a long time.

Bikes should be kept inside of garages or behind fenced yards and should be etched with identification, other than the owner's driver's license or Social Security number.

Record heat continues

Local weather records continued to fall Wednesday, as temperatures topped 80 for the sixth straight day in Alaska's capital.

After hitting 83 degrees Wednesday, breaking the record of 80 degrees set in 1997, Juneau could top 80 degrees again today, National Weather Service meteorologist Tracey Ress said early Wednesday evening. The high is forecast to end up somewhere between 77 and 83 degrees.

"By Juneau standards, it's hot," she said.

Any 80-degree high would set a record for the day. Since Juneau began keeping records in 1943, the highest June 24 reading was 79.

Before Juneau's current hot spell, the community had hit 80 on four straight days during July warm spells in 1951, 1972 and 1990.

New record highs were established during every day of the current streak. Breaking 80 degrees today would tie the record of seven 80-degree days during an entire summer season.

Ress said 80-degree afternoons could continue through Sunday. Friday could hit 85 degrees. A high around 80 was forecast for Saturday, and Sunday's high was forecast at 74 to 80, Ress said.

"It will be slightly cooler Monday," she said. The forecast calls for a high between 69 and 74.

Wildfires continue to burn

Firefighters plan to burn a mile-wide swath of spruce trees in an attempt to halt the rapid spread of two large wildfires in the Alaska Interior.

Dozens of fires continued to blaze Wednesday across Alaska. Fire crews were temporarily buoyed by incoming clouds that raised the humidity, but by afternoon, the weather had again turned against them.

"We're right back into the hot, dry, windy weather," said fire information officer Gary Lehnhausen.

Eight separate fires burned Wednesday in the Solstice complex in northeast of Alaska. The two biggest blazes - the Pingo and Winter Trail fires - grew by a combined 29,500 acres by Tuesday night, Lehnhausen said.

A total of 103,000 acres in and around the complex were ablaze as of Tuesday night, he said.



CONTACT US

  • Switchboard: 907-586-3740
  • Circulation and Delivery: 907-586-3740
  • Newsroom Fax: 907-586-3028
  • Business Fax: 907-586-9097
  • Accounts Receivable: 907-523-2230
  • View the Staff Directory
  • or Send feedback

ADVERTISING

SUBSCRIBER SERVICES

SOCIAL NETWORKING