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Temperatures to briefly warm back into triple digit territory, but fire suppression makes progress

Courtesy of National Weather Service

This week's heat wave won't last as long nor be as intense as the recent temperature spikes.

“As we work into Tuesday and Wednesday, the threat of thunderstorms will increase," said Matthew Dehr, a fire meteorologist for the Washington Department of Natural Resources.

"However, it does look like these thunderstorms will be provided with a pretty significant amount of moisture from the monsoon from the desert Southwest. So the hopes right now are that the thunderstorms that do develop will produce precipitation across the east side of the state and in the high Cascades," he said.

Fire crews continue to increase their containment of several wildfires in the Northwest. They’ve had some success.

The Riparia fire about 20 miles north of Dayton is now fully contained. It has burned about 57-hundred acres of grass. The Williams Lake fire near Cheney hasn’t grown much over the last few days. It is still covering about 18-hundred acres but is still considered only about 40-percent contained. Crews hope to fully contain the Vantage Highway fire near Vantage by midweek. It is Washington’s largest fire of the season, about 31-thousand acres. The Cow Canyon fire near Ellensburg is about 20-percent contained. It has burned about 46-hundred acres.

In Idaho, several fires continue to burn in the Bitteroots in the central part of the state. The one ongoing fire near north Idaho is the Diamond Watch fire, which is a relatively small 120 acres near the border in Pend Oreille County, visible from Priest Lake. No closures or evacuations are reported there.

In Washington, Russ Lane from the wildfire division of DNR says the state is in pretty good shape in terms of having enough people on the lines.

“We do move resources across the country. We’re currently talking with New Mexico about bringing in some additional engines to Washington DNR along with the hand crews," he said.

Lane credited the legislature with allocating additional money for wildfire suppression, which helps them attack fires earlier and keeping them from growing into mega fires.

Doug Nadvornick has spent most of his 30+-year radio career at Spokane Public Radio and filled a variety of positions. He is currently the program director and news director. Through the years, he has also been the local Morning Edition and All Things Considered host (not at the same time). He served as the Inland Northwest correspondent for the Northwest News Network, based in Coeur d’Alene. He created the original program grid for KSFC. He has also served for several years as a board member for Public Media Journalists Association. During his years away from SPR, he worked at The Pacific Northwest Inlander, Washington State University in Spokane and KXLY Radio.