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Colockum Fire grows and is moving South

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Colockum Fire grows and is moving South

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July 29, 2013

photo (1)Wenatchee-Huge smoke plumes can be seen throughout the region.   The fire is moving South towards the Iron Horse Wind Farms area.    It’s been reported that 3 structures have been destroyed.    As of last night at 11pm zero containment.  Around 50 homes remain under evacuation.  Pioneer Middle School is being used for a staging area for fire crews.

The Colockum Tarps Fire is burning south of the town of Malaga west of the Columbia River.  It started on Saturday July 27 at about 8:00 a.m. and grew quickly, burning dry grass, brush and timber, fueled by erratic dry winds.  A large plume of smoke was visible from the town of Yakima July 28 and the fire is now roughly 20,000 acres.  Containment is 5%.

Approximately 60 residences in the vicinity of Colockum, Tarpiscan and Kingsbury Roads are under Level 3 Evacuation notification.  Three primary residences and several outbuildings have burned.  Roads to the fire area (from both Kittitas and Chelan Counties) are closed.  Kittitas County has established a Level 2 Evacuation notification in Upper Colockum Pass and Level 1 notification from Lower Colockum to Parke Creek.

Fire-fighting efforts are currently focused on improving containment lines on the North and West perimeter of the fire and continuing protection around structures.  In the early afternoon, winds are likely to push the fire upslope toward the west among heavier timber fuels.  In the later afternoon, winds are likely to push the fire downhill and south.  A third high priority today is to determine how far the fire has burned to the South and to identify opportunities to safely prevent further spread.

There will be a community meeting tonight at the Malaga Fire Station at 7:30 to receive an update on the fire situation.  There is a Red Cross Shelter open at 606 Western Avenue in Wenatchee.

Cooperating agencies include the Washington Department of Natural Resources, Bureau of Land Management, Chelan County Sheriff, Chelan County Fire District 1, Washington State Patrol, and Kittitas County Sheriff.

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