FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 24, 2009
42 Wildfires in Northeastern Washington
Statewide low moisture levels and high temperatures keep fire danger high
OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is currently responding to more than 42 fire incidents in Northeastern Washington. These fires include those in state and federal jurisdictions. The more than 200 firefighters, aided by 36 fire engines and 5 helicopters, deployed in response have kept all of the fires under 10 acres in size, and most are under 2 acres.
DNR fire officials warn that the entire state will see dangerous fire conditions this weekend and into next week.
“This next seven days will be some of the highest fire danger levels we’ve seen in recent years, for the Westside as well as the Eastside,” said Mark Gray, acting Assistant Division Manager of DNR Fire Control, Aviation and Camps.
Fire incidents due to lightning in Northeastern Washington during the past 48 hours.
Many Washington counties have fire hazard levels rated as “high” to “extreme” this weekend due to dry weather and low moisture levels in grasses, trees, and other vegetation. Check local conditions and restrictions by calling 1-800-323-BURN (2876) or go to: http://fortress.wa.gov/dnr/firedanger
DNR’s wildfire mission
Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, DNR is responsible for preventing and fighting wildfires on 12.7 million acres of private, state and tribal-owned forestlands in Washington. DNR is the state’s largest on-call fire department. During fire season, this includes more than 700 DNR employees who have other permanent jobs with the agency and about 375 seasonal workers. DNR also participates in Washington’s coordinated interagency approach to firefighting.
Aaron Toso, Director of Communications & Outreach, 360-902-1023, firstname.lastname@example.org
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