WA wildfire burns homes

A raging wildfire burned more than 100 homes this week in Washington.

BY HEATHER MOYER | POMEROY, Wash. | August 12, 2005


A raging wildfire burned more than 100 homes this week in Washington.

The School Wildfire near southwest Washington city of Pomeroy burned 109 homes and another 106 outbuildings since it started last weekend. The residents of more than 170 homes remained evacuated Friday as the 48,000-acre blaze continues to challenge firefighters.

The burnt homes were a mixture of year-round homes, summer recreation homes, and recreational cabins, said a spokesperson for the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center (NWCC).

High winds from powerful storms were the reason the fire spread so quickly earlier this week. The high winds combined with the dry timber make for a volatile situation, said the spokesperson, and the terrain is also difficult for firefighters to navigate. The wildfire is 40% contained.

The cause of that blaze is being investigated.

Near Lake Wenatchee in north central Washington, the residents of 175 homes are still on stand-by due to a nearby wildfire. Those families had been out of their homes most of last week because of the Dirty Face Wildfire - named for the mountain on which it's burning. The 1,150-acre wildfire is now 80% contained.

Fire officials say steep and difficult terrain has made the blaze very hard for firefighters. Hot, dry weather has also slowed the fight.

According to the National Interagency Coordination Center, some 41,502 wildfires have burned close to 6 million acres of land across the country in 2005 so far.


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