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From:Friday, May 23, 2008 11:21 AM -0800
Subject:DHS&EM 23 May 2008 Situation Report 08-144 
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Attachments:
STATE OF ALASKA
DIVISION OF HOMELAND SECURITY
AND EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT

SITUATION REPORT 08-144 (as of 11:00 AM, May 23, 2008)

Homeland Security Advisory System – National Level:  Yellow-Elevated
Homeland Security Advisory System – Alaska Level:  Yellow-Elevated
Maritime Security (MARSEC) Level – Level I – Low.
Military installations in Alaska are at FPCON A.
State of Alaska Cyber Security Alert Level: Guarded
World Health Organization Pandemic Phase - Phase 3: No or very limited human-to-human transmission (An Influenza Pandemic situation report, which contains an explanation of the WHO Pandemic Phases, is attached to this situation report and updated every Tuesday)

Threat Level Changes
No change.

State of Alaska Situation
(Updates to this section from previous Situation Report are in Italics.)

2008 River Watch Program
DHS&EM’s River Watch Lower Yukon Team has completed their ice/river observation and assessments and are returning to Anchorage today.  River ice between St Mary’s and Mountain Village is rotten and degrading rapidly. SECC operations will remain at Level 2 through the weekend. DHS&EM now considers the 2008 River Watch program complete.

Alaska Spring Breakup Summary
The NWS Alaska-Pacific River Forecast Center publishes the spring breakup summary for Alaska.
Flood Watch:
The flood watch continues for a portion of northern Alaska including the Yukon Delta through Sunday afternoon.  Ice jams upstream of Emmonak have resulted in a considerable amount of water built up upstream of the jams and many low areas are seeing overbank flow. Ice sheets are still in place in the south channel between Emmonak and Alakanuk. If the ice from upstream moves below Emmonak and stops, flooding will occur.  Flooding of low areas of Emmonak until the ice moves out.

Note:  Even though a particular river or reach may be described as mostly open or open, it is still possible for runs of ice and debris to move through as headwaters upstream breakup.  Please use caution at all times when attempting to navigate rivers.             

Recent Breakup Activity as of 22 May 08:

Kobuk River:  Recent pilot reports indicate ice free conditions at Kiana and previous reports indicated little ice in the river above the Squirrel River confluence. Thus, the river is likely to be mostly open except for the Delta channels.

Noatak River:  The river is reported mostly open from the Hugo River to Noatak Village.

Seward Peninsula:  No recent reports on rivers in the area.

Yukon River:  The Yukon River is mostly open from the Canadian border to Holy Cross with the exception of the Porcupine River ice entering the Yukon below Fort Yukon. This will create a run of ice and debris down the Yukon River over the next several days. This will impact navigation as it moves down river. Expect light runs of ice between Holy Cross and Russian Mission. The ice from the jam up river from Grayling ran quickly and the downstream edge is below Mountain Village on Tuesday. The ice run is about 90 miles in length. High water at Marshall began to fall overnight and the road to the airport is now accessible.  Any further flood threat in Marshall should diminish soon after the upstream end of the ice run passes the village.

Kuskokwim River: The River is mostly open.

Tanana River: The River is mostly open.

Southwest Alaska.  The Nushagak River is mostly open. Most other rivers are likely to be mostly open as well.

Southcentral Alaska: Rivers are mostly open. Some may have ice along the banks in places and occasional chunks floating down river. Most lower elevation lakes are open but higher lakes and lakes that had heavy snow cover may still have ice cover.

For detailed information and to see a flood potential map, breakup map, and other breakup information for Alaska refer to this web site at Http://aprfc.arh.noaa.gov.

Red Flag Warning
The National Weather Service in Fairbanks has issued Red Flag Warnings that remains in effect until 10 pm Saturday for strong wind. Conditions will improve on Sunday as winds diminish.  Red flag warnings follows:

Deltana and Tanana Flats:  A moderate Chinook event is setting up for the Alaska Range beginning late this morning. Southeast winds will increase to 20 to 35 mph by noon and relative humidities will drop below 30 percent at this time as well. Rh`s will recover above 30 Percent late this evening but decrease again during the day on Saturday. Winds are expected to remain strong through Saturday evening.

Denali: A moderate Chinook event is setting up for the Alaska Range beginning late this morning. South winds will increase to 20 to 35 mph by noon with gusts to 50 mph through passes and relative humidities will drop below 30 percent at this time. Rh`s will recover above 30 percent late this evening but decrease again during the day on Saturday. Winds are expected to remain strong through Saturday evening.

Eastern Alaska Range: A moderate Chinook event is setting up for the Alaska Range beginning late this morning. South winds will increase to 20 to 35 mph by noon with gusts to 50 mph through passes and relative humidities will drop below 30 percent at this time. Rh`s will recover above 30 percent late this evening but decrease again during the day on Saturday. Winds are expected to remain strong through Saturday evening.

Division of Forestry
Alaska Interagency Coordination Center Situation Report (AICC)
As of May 23, 2008, there have been a total of 116 fires reported with total acreage of 842.9.

The Kenai area fire, Homestead, Crews continue to mop up. Fire was observed to be smoldering in logging slash and heavy downed fuels. Implementation of the demobe plan has begun. Fire was declared contained at 2000 5/22. Perimeter was mapped and acreage computed at 260 acres.

Please see http://firewx.arh.noaa.gov/ for current fire weather forecasts.

Current weather warnings and watches for State of Alaska can be found at the following National Weather Service web site:  http://www.arh.noaa.gov/

Alaska Volcano Information:  Please see http://www.avo.alaska.edu/activity/

DOT&PF Road Information:  can be found at http://511.Alaska.gov/ or by calling 511.

The Next Situation Report: will be published as of 2:00 PM, May 26, 2008. A significant change in the situation or the threat level will prompt an interim report. Please direct questions regarding this report to the SECC at 907-428-7100 or secc@ak-prepared.com.

How to reach the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management: Phone the State Emergency Coordination Center (SECC) by dialing (907) 428-7100 or 1-800-478-2337, 24 hours per day.  Information on emergency topics is available on the Division's web site at http://www.ak-prepared.com.  Homeland Security information may be found at http://www.ak-prepared.com/homelandsecurity/

How to reach the Division of Administration – State Cyber Security Program:  If you have questions you may contact Darrell Davis, State Computer Security Officer darrel.davis@Alaska.gov.

For further information:
Being prepared: Ready.gov
Countries:              U.S. State Department Background Notes.
Maps:           United Nations Cartographic Section
                University of Texas Library Map Section.
                        http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/20120.pdf