Helicopter ignites wildfire near Galena

Posted: Friday, June 07, 2002

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Firefighters were trying to put out a wildfire near Galena Friday that was sparked by the exhaust of a helicopter, Alaska fire officials said.

No one was hurt in the mishap Thursday.

The helicopter was landing to pick up a survey crew when its exhaust ignited the grass below it, said Andy Williams of the Alaska Interagency Coordination Center.

The blaze burned 75 acres and destroyed the helicopter before firefighters stopped its spread, Williams said.

An Alaska Fire Service helicopter, smokejumpers and two air tankers worked to contain the fire.

Two emergency fire crews were assigned to the fire Friday morning.

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