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Brush fire burning thousands of acres

Local firefighters called out


From the NWCC site

A brush fire that started south of Leahy Junction Wednesday afternoon had consumed nearly 7 square miles of grass and brush by this morning after some short-range jumping and fast movement late Wednesday.

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife biologist Eric Braaten discovered the fire about 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

With crews totaling 20 firefighters and three fire engines, what's now called the R Road fire set local mutual-aid agreements into play, and firefighters from Grand Coulee and Electric City responded in the 100-plus-degree weather.

Today, crews that had been working on the Coyote Flats fire will arrive to assist.

Bratten reported the fire when he discovered it about a mile west of highway 17 and three miles northeast of Sims Corner, the junction with SR 172 that leads to Mansfield.

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management is the lead agency on the fire, which had burned 4,250 acres and was considered 25 percent contained at 12:46 p.m. today, according to data published by the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center.

It is one of at least 17 fires being fought in the Northwest, clouding the air with smoke for hundreds of miles.

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