July 29, 2013 at 8:30 AM
32 square mile Goldendale wildfire 25 percent contained
The Associated Press
Fire officials say they are starting to get control over a large wildfire burning near Goldendale on top of Satus Pass.
Spokesman Randy Shepard of the interagency fire management team says the fire has grown to almost 32 square miles, but it is now about 25 percent contained. He says weather conditions are favorable for more progress on Monday.
He says fire officials are confident they will have a line around the fire within the next few days.
The fire covered about 27 square miles on Sunday and has been growing to the east through rough terrain. It’s about 7 miles from the small town of Bickleton, but Shepard says fire officials do not expect the fire to get near the village.
Highway 97 is still closed between Goldendale and Toppenish and will remain closed as long as necessary for safety reasons.
About 1,200 people are fighting the fire. A few more homes have been added to the evacuation notices but no structures have been destroyed. The fire threatens about 144 structures, including about 70 residences.
The cause of the fire remains unknown.
Meanwhile, a brush fire burning 20 miles south of Wenatchee has grown to more than 10 square miles.
The wildfire in the Colockum Pass area has burned five houses since breaking out Saturday.
A spokesman for fire managers, Rick Issackson, tells KPQ the five homes lost are in addition to other structures destroyed in the fire.
About 40 homes are threatened in the area residents have been evacuated, and the Red Cross has set up a shelter at a church in the city.
Fire crews continue to fight a third fire near North Bend where an 18-acre wildfire is burning on the south side of Mount Si. No structures are threatened by that fire.
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The Today File is a general news blog featuring real-time coverage of Seattle and the Northwest. It is reported by the news staff of The Seattle Times and edited by Assistant Metro Editor Nick Provenza.
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