OMAK – Over the last 24 hours crews fighting the Cold Springs Fire in the Omak area have made significant progress on the fire and it’s now 40 percent contained, according to the Saturday morning update.
The fire, which started on Sunday evening, Aug. 6 at around 9:45 is still under investigation, but human cause is suspected. The fire has burned approximately 187,689 acres, according to the Northeast Washington Interagency IMT Type 3, Team #2, led by Incident Commander Dean Kiefer
“Yesterday and overnight containment lines were strengthened and additional line was constructed by dozers and crews. The northeast portion of the fire which consists of Omak Lake and Haley Creek areas are the main priority at this time,” states the update. “The plan for today is to strengthen containment lines by working in from the perimeter. Smoke conditions are expected to worsen from the fires in the south. Aircraft will assist firefighters once again today if the smoke conditions allow. Omak Lake and Haley Lake area are still under level 2 and 3 evacuation levels.”
Power companies are working in the area to replace several hundred poles that were damaged or burned in the fire. Firefighters will continue to work with power crews to clear trees that have burned to keep the area safe to work in. Cell phone coverage continues to be a challenge in some areas due to towers being damaged during initial attack. The fire is 187,689 acres. Temperatures today will be in the 90s with humidity levels in the teens.”
“Currently there are approximately 290 firefighters from local agencies and from around the region that engaged in the Cold Springs Fire firefighting operations. Several structures and outbuildings were damaged and/or lost during initial attack. The team is continuing structure assessments.
“The Okanogan County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the death of an infant and serious injury of two individuals that were found Wednesday within the fire perimeter,” states the report.
Okanogan County Fairgrounds is open for livestock and has areas for RV campers. The Red Cross is coordinating shelter for those that have been evacuated. The contact information for the Red Cross is 509 670-5331. The Red Cross has opened a shelter in Brewster. Citizen and firefighter safety are the number one priority. Citizens are asked to remain clear of the fire area.
For current evacuation orders please see www.Okanogandem.org. Click on the incidents tab and locate the specific incident. Columbia River Rd. remains closed.
Fire information and the incident command post is located at Omak Stampede grounds in Omak. Fire information contact is Jeff Sevigney at 509-993-2946 or Don Malone at 509-822-8125 or you can also follow us on Facebook at NEWIMT3, and Inciweb at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/.