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Fire Fighters Stomp Down Douglas Complex Fire

An airplane drops fire retardant on a portion of the Douglas County Complex fire on July 12.

Fire crews said Monday afternoon that the Douglas County Complex fire burning near Wenatchee, Washington, is at least 55 percent contained.

Five lightning-started fires merged over the weekend creating two larger blazes near the town of Waterville. About 300 homes were evacuated over the weekend from the Douglas County Complex.

Now all evacuations for those 100 people have been lifted. No homes have burned so far, but a couple of communities remain on high alert as firefighters work to put out hot spots. Aircraft are assisting firefighters.

Jeff Sevigney, fire spokesman for the Northeast Washington Incident Management Team, said these lightning strikes are showing how dry the Northwest terrain is overall.

“Fire season has been busy and early,” he said. “We’ve been extremely busy and we have a lot of fire season left.”

A Red Cross station at Ephrata High School was recently closed after most residents were allowed to return to their homes.

Anna King calls Richland, Washington home and loves unearthing great stories about people in the Northwest. She reports for the Northwest News Network from a studio at Washington State University, Tri-Cities. She covers the Mid-Columbia region, from nuclear reactors to Mexican rodeos.