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Williams Flats fire half contained

Helpful rain also stranded firefighters


Last updated 8/14/2019 at 10:49am

The Williams Flats fire, burning upstream from the Keller Ferry, is 50% contained and has burned approximately 45,000 acres.

As of Aug. 13, according to a press release from Northwest Interagency Incident Management Team 8, there were 812 people working on the fire, down from the 1,203 working on the fire Aug. 10. Firefighters are being re-assigned as more of Williams Flats comes under control.

Still assigned to the fire on Tuesday were 16 hand crews, one medium helicopter, one light helicopter, four ambulances, 28 engines, 12 dozers, one masticator, four skidgenes, and 15 water tenders.

Rain over the weekend “dramatically moderated the behavior of the Williams Flats Fire,” but also led to flash floods that damaged roads connected to firefighting efforts and stranded some 64 firefighters overnight.

Heavy rain over a recent burn scar or other steep terrain can cause life-threatening flash floods, as well as mud and rock slides.

Yesterday, firefighting resources were continuing efforts to repair roads. The west and southwest flanks of the fire were deemed secure. With access to the south flank restored, firefighters were attempting to finish a containment line with about a mile left.

Along the north flank, firefighters were going to start repairs along dozer lines and strengthen existing lines. On the northeast, firefighters would continue to reopen storm-damaged roads to provide safer and easier access to the fire.

The fire was started by lighting Aug. 2.


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