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Conrad Fire Grows With Winds In Central Washington

Washington DNR
The Conrad Fire, burning outside of Naches, Washington, started Sunday afternoon.

A large wildfire is burning outside of Naches, in central Washington state. The fire, called the Conrad Fire, started Sunday afternoon. It’s currently estimated at 5,200 acres and about 20 percent contained.

Hundreds of firefighters are scrambling to dig lines to hold the Conrad Fire back. ?It’s burning in largely rural areas of sagebrush and wild grasses. There are around 80 addresses on Level 1 evacuation, which means be aware, packed and ready to go.

So far, there are about 30 structures surrounded by burned area, that have been saved by fire crews. State officials have been called in to help manage the fire. ? Firefighters are working hard to keep the Conrad Fire from reaching another fire scarred area from last summer. That area is largely carpeted by highly-flammable cheatgrass. If the fire reached that scar, officials say they worry it could eat up a lot of ground quickly.

Winds are driving the Conrad Fire in that direction. The area features very rough terrain where crews can’t reach, so aircraft are dropping water on those lines to try and hold it.

Red flag winds and very low humidity are expected throughout the next couple of days. 

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.