An NPR member station
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Our signal in Bonners Ferry and Omak is seriously impaired due to weather— Learn more here.

Firefighters Use Mild Conditions To Go On the Offense In Washington State

Firefighters have nearly contained the Twisp River Fire, part of the Okanogan Complex .
Alan Barbian
/
InciWeb
Firefighters have nearly contained the Twisp River Fire, part of the Okanogan Complex .

The Chelan and Okanogan Complex fires total more than 230,000 acres. Both fires still threaten more than 8,000 homes.

Firefighters are currently taking advantage of cooler temperatures and mild winds to get ahead of the fires in north central Washington state.

On the Chelan Complex, firefighters are closely watching one fire on the east side of the lake that’s burning northwest. They say that large stumps, downed logs and dead trees are still extremely dry and a problem. That wood isn’t going out on its own. In the right conditions those logs could light up new fires even after containment lines have been drawn.

On the Okanogan Complex, the Twisp River Fire is now nearly totally contained. That’s the fire in which the three firefighters died. Crews will soon be doing restoration work and be directed to other serious fires.

Still, other fires are a major concern for communities there. Firefighters are working to protect high-value areas like microwave towers, recreational sites and homes.

Copyright 2015 Northwest News Network

Anna King calls Richland, Washington home and loves unearthing great stories about people in the Northwest. She reports for the Northwest News Network from a studio at Washington State University, Tri-Cities. She covers the Mid-Columbia region, from nuclear reactors to Mexican rodeos.