Michigan's Upper Peninsula wildfire destroys 115 structures

Published On: May 30 2012 01:08:06 PM EDT
NEWBERRY, Mich. -

State officials say 115 structures, including homes and a motel, have been destroyed by a wildfire in the Upper Peninsula.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources said Wednesday the wildfires in Luce County's Duck Lake area is 55 percent contained.

READ: Crews work to protect structures in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula wildfire

The DNR would like to remind all pilots that a Temporary Flight Restriction remains in effect over the area of the Duck Lake Fire.

Structures Destroyed

DNR reports 115 sites have been inspected at this point with 23 sites remaining.

Inspections are ongoing, and it is anticipated that they will be completed by the end of the day.

Of the 115 structures lost, DNR provides a breakdown as follows:

  • 41 homes/cabins
  • 22 garages
  • 27 sheds/outbuildings
  • 25 campers
  • 1 store
  • 1 motel

How the fire began

The fire started last week and stretched 11 miles north to Lake Superior. Tahquamenon Falls State Park's Upper Falls viewing area and visitor center and Lower Falls campground have reopened. Some hiking trails remain closed.

DNR says an evacuation order remains in effect for the area from Pike Lake east to County Road 500 and north to Little Lake Harbor

Because of extremely dry conditions, Gov. Rick Snyder last week barred fireworks and outdoor burning in 49 counties in the Upper and Lower peninsulas.

Fighting the fire

The fire's size is 21,450 acres.

A total of 237 personnel are involved with fire suppression efforts, including 56 overhead personnel according to the DNR.  People, equipment and agencies fighting the fire include:

  • Four DNR conservation officers and a sergeant
  • Volunteer fire departments
  • 18 DNR fire engines, 10 volunteer fire department engines, 1 VFD fire department water tanker, 3 Wisconsin DNR engines.
  • 10 Michigan DNR and 2 Wisconsin DNR bulldozers
  • 1 US Fish & Wildlife Service helicopter
  • 2 Minnesota DNR air tankers
  • 4 Michigan National Guard aircraft and ground support
  • Keweenaw Bay Indian Community hand crew
  • WIC #1 hand crew from Wisconsin

Have you been affected by the fires? Do you have pictures? Email local4@clickondetroit.com.

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