Near-record rain keeps Interior wildfires down

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) _ A near record-setting month of rain in Fairbanks is having a positive effect on wildfire suppression in interior Alaska.

Rain over the weekend brought the Fairbanks total in June to a virtual tie with June 1949 when 3.55 inches fell.

The Alaska Interagency Coordination Center reports no significant wildfire activity in the Interior.

June historically is the height of wildfire season.

AP reports Fuels and fire analyst Robert Ziel as saying that if fires aren't active when July arrives, they generally don't get started heavily for the rest of the summer.

Since 2000, there's been only one active wildfire season if fewer than 200,000 acres have burned by June.

Ziel says fires in July typically feed off fires that started earlier in the season.