VIDEO: A destructive wildfire season in Alaska has only grown worse in recent weeks, as the Swan Lake Fire has spread rapidly. Located near Sterling on the Kenai Peninsula, the blaze has been fueled by an incredibly warm and dry summer.
Since being ignited by lightning on June 5, the blaze has become the country's largest wildfire at a total size of 158,042 acres, as of Aug. 28. Along with the Ethel Creek Fire near Koliganek, Alaska is currently home to two of the country's three largest blazes.
Brett Thomas, an operations section chief with Great Basin Team One, said that the teams fighting the blaze have been successful in starting to manage the spread of the flames. However, the widespread smoke and diminished air quality have remained a concern in many locations.
“Hopefully, the level of smoke will diminish over the next few days,” Thomas said in statement.